Blog

The role of data in European democracy

Cross-posted from the Digital Agenda for Europe Blog. This week campaigners and officials from over 60 countries around the world are meeting in London for the Open Government Partnership Summit to discuss how to make governments more open. A major focus will be how to make official information available and accessible for all. At the […]

Come and meet us at the Open Government Partnership Summit in London!

The Open Knowledge Foundation is involved with a number of events at and around the Open Government Partnership Summit this week. If you’re coming to the summit or any of the events around it, here is where you can find us. Tuesday 29th October If you’re going to the Open Data Institute’s Annual Summit, you […]

Government data still not open enough – new survey on eve of London summit

In the week of a major international summit on government transparency in London, the Open Knowledge Foundation has published its 2013 Open Data Index, showing that governments are still not providing enough information in an accessible form to their citizens and businesses. The UK and US top the 2013 Index, which is a result of […]

Announcing our new declaration on open data – and inviting your feedback

The Global Open Data Initiative partners, including the Open Knowledge Foundation, are excited today to share a draft Declaration on Open Data, and would welcome comments and feedback on its contents. Open Data has enormous unfulfilled promise to change how governments work and to empower citizenship. Even as more governments and issue experts discover new […]

Civil Society Day and Unconference at the OGP

The Open Government Partnership Summit is the primary forum for the global community of openness reformers from all backgrounds – government, civil society and private sector – to come together and engage with each other. We’ve been helping organise the OGP Civil Society Day – the day before the Summit – which will provide an […]

Global Open Data Initiative moving forward

(This is a cross-post from the Global Open Data Initiative blog.) The Global Open Data Initiative is a coalition of civil society organisations working together in the area of open government data and open government. Our basic goal is that citizens will have full and open access to the government data that is needed in […]

Next Steps on “Follow the Money” – from OKCon to the Open Government Partnership Summit

The following post is from Alan Hudson, Policy Director (Transparency & Accountability) at ONE and Jonathan Gray, Director of Policy and Ideas at the Open Knowledge Foundation. Last month we announced the Open Knowledge Foundation and ONE’s plans to support and strengthen the community of activists and advocacy organisations working to enable citizens to follow […]

Open Data developments in Asia

The following guest post is by Waltraut Ritter, a member of Opendata Hong Kong, the Open Knowledge Foundation’s Local Group. It is the first of two posts exploring the current state of open data in Asia. The Open Knowledge Conference in Geneva attracted delegates from 55 countries, indicating that open, public data is indeed becoming […]

Open Assets in Argentina

The following guest post is by Florencia Coelho, from Argentinian daily La Nacion. In Argentina, where a Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) has yet to be signed, LA NACION and three transparency NGOs – Poder Ciudadano, ACIJ (Asociación Civil por la Igualdad y la Justicia) and Fundación Directorio Legislativo joined efforts to produce the first […]

Open Data Training at the Open Knowledge Foundation

We’re delighted to announce today the launch of a new portfolio of open data training programs. For many years the Open Knowledge Foundation has been working — both formally and informally — with governments, civil society organisations and others to provide this kind of advice and training. Today marks the first time we’ve brought it […]

Register now for the OGP Summit and Civil Society Day

This October, the Open Government Partnership Annual Summit is coming to London. We’re helping to organise the Civil Society Day, which will take place on the 30th October at University of London Union, followed on the 31st October and the 1st November by the main conference. The draft agendas for both the main Summit and […]

New partnership to bring open data to developing countries

We are really excited to announce a new partnership between us, the World Bank and the ODI, which was announced at OKCon in Geneva today. This important joint venture aims to bring open data projects and engagement to developing countries. Here’s the press release. Left to right: Laura James and Rufus Pollock, the Open Knowledge […]

What’s the point of open data?

I’ve been puzzling for a while how the open data community can help the many great groups that have been fighting for transparency of key money flows for the past decade and more. I think one answer may be that open data helps us go beyond simply making information available. If done well, it can […]

OKCon 2013 Guest Post: Which bar to raise?

The following post is by Paul Maassen, who together with Daniel Dietrich and Anders Pedersen will be coordinating the workshop ‘Raising the bar for ambition and quality in OGP: workshop to develop a ‘Civil Society National OGP Review’, to be held on Tuesday 17 September, 14:45 – 16:00 @ Room 5, Floor 3, as part of […]

An Open Letter on the UK’s Proposed Lobbying Bill

The following is an open letter to the Prime Minister and Deputy Prime Minister about the UK’s proposed Lobbying Bill, initiated by the Open Knowledge Foundation and signed by organisations working for greater government transparency and openness in the UK and around the world. A version of the letter was printed in today’s edition of […]

Open Data Census: Help assess the state of open government data

Would you like to help track the state of government data? Then now is the time to join the Open Data Census community as one of the Country Editors for your country and help our community-driven push to show governments of the world the state of open data! The Open Data Census is a tool […]

It is time for Open Services

The following guest post is by Guillermo Moncecchi. In a previous post, we advocated for the generation of a Public Digital Infrastructure (PDI), suggesting that governments should advance in the provision of open digital capabilities, free of restrictions, to do, within the law, whatever we want with them. These capabilities would be built on top […]

How can open data lead to better data quality?

Open data can be freely used by anyone – which means that data users can help to fix, enrich or flag problems with the data, leading to improvements in its quality. The Open Knowledge Foundation is currently looking to collect the best examples and stories we can find about how open data can lead to […]

Even after earthquakes, we need Open

The following guest post is by Chistian Quintili from Open Ricostruzione. Open Ricostruzione is an Italian civic project focused on people engagement after the earthquake which damaged cities of Emilia-Romagna in 2012 Open Ricostruzione is pleased to have a little corner in the OKF network. Our project, in short, is a website to monitor public […]

Open Data Privacy

“yes, the government should open other people’s data” Traditionally, the Open Knowledge Foundation has worked to open non-personal data – things like publicly-funded research papers, government spending data, and so on. Where individual data was a part of some shared dataset, such as a census, great amounts of thought and effort had gone in to […]

Beneficial ownership registries should be published as open data

In the coming months many governments around the world will decide whether databases of who really owns and controls companies should be made public or not. As we’ve said before, we think registers of ‘beneficial ownership‘ (i.e. registers of who really stands to benefit from company ownership, not just whomever it is convenient or expedient […]

Open tax data, or just VAT ‘open wash’

This post is by Chris Taggart, the co-founder and CEO of OpenCorporates, the largest open database of companies in the world, and a member of the Open Government working group. [Disclosure: I am on the UK Tax Transparency Board, which has not yet discussed these proposals, but will be doing so at the next meeting […]

Network Summit

Twice-yearly the whole community of the Open Knowledge Foundation gathers together to share with, learn from and support one another. The Summer Summit 2013 took place in Cambridge (UK) last week (10th-14th July), with staff updates on the Thursday and network representatives joining on the Friday, Saturday and Sunday. It was so inspiring to hear […]

What Does $3.2M Buy in Open Government?

The following guest post is by Travis Korte from the Information Technology & Innovation Foundation. The Knight Foundation received hundreds of submissions to its “Knight News Challenge on Open Gov.,” a competition designed to create new tools to improve how citizens interact with government. The applicants noted a number of problems with government data: confusing […]

Save the Date – OGP Pre-Conference, London Wednesday 30th October

This Autumn the Open Government Partnership Annual Conference is coming to London and will place on the 31st October and 1st November. As a lead into the main event, OGP is planning a 1-day civil society Pre-Conference event on Wednesday 30th October and we here at the Open Knowledge Foundation will be collaborating with them […]

Japan’s Administration Urges Ministries to Promote Open Data

A few days ago the 4th e-Government Open Data Expert Committee was held in Tokyo. At the committee the specific measures to implement Japan’s new IT strategy, which was launched mid-June, were discussed – highlighting open data as a central means to achieve among other economic vitalization. During the discussions, Mr. Ichita Yamamoto, the Minister […]

Open company data on the rise: featuring G8, World Bank, EITI…

The following guest post is by Chris Taggart of OpenCorporates. Here he rounds-up recent developments within the field of Open Company Data. This article is cross-posted from http://blog.opencorporates.com/, published by Chrinon Ltd, a company dedicated to improving and publishing public data under an open licence that allows and encourages reuse, including commercially (direct link to […]

Understanding Barriers to Open Government Data

The following guest post is by Chris Martin, researcher at the University of Leeds. Here he presents the results of his recent research into perceptions of the barriers to open government data. He looks at the similarities and differences between public and non-profit sector perceptions, pointing to the utility of greater cross-sectoral collaboration. Earlier in […]

Making Transparency Visible: an update on OGP in Ireland

This is cross-posted from the Open Government Partnership blog. In my previous post on the Open Government Partnership website, I posed the question ‘Is Ireland closing the door on Open Government?’. At that time I expressed the view that Ireland’s government was uninterested in the benefits of open government. Now, eight months later, I am […]

Africanising the Open Government Partnership

This is cross-posted with permission from the Development Initiatives blog “OGP will be real, only when it starts to make sense to the citizens out there” (Robert Hunja – World Bank) The government of Kenya recently hosted the first ever OGP regional forum in Africa. The event aimed to establish guidelines for OGP activities for […]

G8 countries must work harder to open up essential data

PRESS RELEASE. Cambridge, UK, 14th June 2013. Also available in Chinese, German, Russian, Spanish and other languages here. Open data and transparency will be one of the three main topics at the G8 Summit in Northern Ireland next week. Today transparency campaigners released preview results from the global Open Data Census showing that G8 countries […]

Announcing the Global Open Data Initiative

The Global Open Data Initiative (GODI) is a new initiative led by the Open Knowledge Foundation, Open Institute, Fundar, Sunlight Foundation and the World Wide Web Foundation. It mission is to share principles and resources for governments and societies on how to best harness the opportunities created by opening government data. The initiative is intended […]

From PSI to open data – LAPSI is ready for a new round of legal questions

In February, 23 partners kicked off the LAPSI 2.0 thematic network on the legal aspects of public sector information in Leuven, Belgium. The network, consisting of academic institutions and stakeholders from 15 countries, will continue where the previous LAPSI network left off, and look at the remaining legal barriers hindering the full and open availability […]

Open knowledge at the Open Government Partnership conference in Mombasa, Africa

Last week, the Open Knowledge Foundation had the pleasure of attending the Open Government Partnership conference in Mombasa, Kenya. Participants from all over Africa as well as the rest of the world convened to discuss transparency, citizen engagement and open knowledge – including open data – in this inspiring event to set the course for […]

Shakespeare review: analysis

We welcome the Shakespeare review as a time to reflect, coming as it does at a time of great growth in open data in government and the public sector. The UK has lead the way with government taking a pioneering stance on open data policy in recent years, and this report sets out key recommendations […]

Announcing CKAN 2.0

CKAN is a powerful, open source, open data management platform, used by governments and organizations around the world to make large collections of data accessible, including the UK and US government open data portals. Today we are very happy and excited to announce the final release of CKAN 2.0. This is the most significant piece […]

Follow the Money, Follow the Data

The following guest post from Martin Tisné was first published on his personal blog. Some thoughts which I hope may be helpful in advance of the ‘follow the data‘ hack day this week-end: The open data sector has quite successfully focused on socially-relevant information: fixing potholes a la http://www.fixmystreet.com/, adopting fire hydrants a la http://adoptahydrant.org/. […]

Opening Public Data in South Africa

Cape Town City Hall, Felix Gottwald It seems somewhat absurd to me that publicly funded institutions in South Africa should be allowed to copyright data produced using public funds. Of course, it is reasonable to expect that physical assets such as buildings, vehicles or machinery should appear on their balance sheets and be reserved for […]

LobbyPlag – Who is really writing the law?

Sometimes, the band continues to play because the audience is enjoying the music so much. This is pretty much what happened to Lobbyplag. Our plan was to drive home a single point that outraged us: Some Members of the European Parliament were taking law proposals verbatim from lobbyists and trying to slip them into the […]

The Biggest Failure of Open Data in Government

Many open data initiatives forget to include the basic facts about the government itself In the past few years we’ve seen a huge shift in the way governments publish information. More and more governments are proactively releasing information as raw open data rather than simply putting out reports or responding to requests for information. This […]

Open Data at Open Source Days, Denmark

2013 is a very important year for Denmark as it has conquered two milestones in its Open Data agenda and this spring, the entire story will come together at the first conference addressing open data since the big release. Here’s the event info in brief: What?: Open Data track at Open Source Days Where?: Copenhagen […]

The Open Data Census Challenge on Open Data Day 2013

On the recent Open Data Day we ran the Open Data Census Challenge. The challenge enlisted the help of participants around the world in digging up information on open data in their city and region and contributing it to the newly launched city section of the Open Data Census. The results have been impressive with […]

Italian government ditches transparency and open data

This post is a translation of Il nostro contributo per salvare gli #OpenData originally published by Ernesto Belisario on Agorà Digitale. Most links point to documents and websites in Italian. In the past few weeks I have been very involved with transparency (and therefore, open data) together with the friends of Agorà Digitale. Right when […]

Keeping track of the European Parliament

The following guest post is by Stef. ###European Union legislation: In whose interest? Brussels is a globally important policy-making center. The European single market is advanced and huge, with industry interests competing with national politics and NGO values. Policy negotiations at this level attract powerful interests. The current Data Protection Regulation, for example, brings in […]

How open data could transform the citizen-government relationship in Uganda

This blog is cross-posted from the AidInfo blog. This Saturday is Open Data Day, a global initiative that encourages citizens around the world to show support for and encourage the adoption of open data policies by the world’s governments. It’s an exciting time for Uganda because on Saturday we have jointly organised a hackathon with […]