We’ve come a long way in open data. From identifying millions of pounds in potential savings in public services to supporting businesses that employ hundreds of people and attract thousands of pounds in new contracts, the Open Data Institute (ODI) is making a big impact. Now it’s time to see how open data has helped to shape public services around the world. These issue will be addressed at the ODI’s second annual summit, hosted across central London between November 3-4. The summit brings together inventors, businesses leaders and thinkers to celebrate the power of open data.
In theory, open data should make the public sector more efficient and effective, and it should give citizens more confidence in the way their tax money is being spent. But in order to inspire confidence, people need to see two things. They must know that data is being published in the manner it should be published, and they need to know that data is accurate.
Data.gov has taken open source to heart. Beyond just providing open data and open source code, the entire process involves open civic engagement. There are some great examples of apps, visualizations, and analyses that are created from working with developers, educators, and businesses on a specific challenge at events that pull the community together, like data jams, meetups, and conferences.
After four long months of speculations and political maneuvering, the French Government finally announced that France is getting its first Chief Data Officer. Open data will become an even more central part of the French Government. The CDO will work with Secretary of State Thierry Mandon and Prime Minister Manuel Valls to handle multiple important tasks.
The main challenge for the UK's emerging open data movement remains cultural rather than technical - persuading organisations and managers including public servants it is worth opening up, and not damaging to do so, Open Data Institute (ODI) chief executive Gavin Starks has said.