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WEEKLY OVERVIEW

3 Reasons Why Las Vegas Gets Open Data Right

The City of Las Vegas publishes a large portion of the data it collects on its website for citizens to see and use—just as the leaders of the federal government’s Open Data initiative hoped they would. Why? For one, the simple act of transparency can help rebuild confidence in government institutions.

Why some local authorities are missing the point of open data - and what to do about it

Alongside increasing transparency and improving public services, one of the government’s core stated objectives for open data has been to boost innovation by data-driven businesses. Yet, there are three flaws in the approach of some local authorities that place the objective at risk: 1) No guaranteed supply of data; 2) Too small-scale to be viable; 3) Poor data quality.

Open data, and what it can do to make government better

According to the provincial government's website, open data is defined as "the release of government datasets in accessible formats for use and re-use by anyone for any purpose." One thing open data can do is provide an opportunity for individuals and groups to provide better public services, which could alleviate some pressure on government when it comes to solving problems in society.

This Handbook Can Help Governments Open Data

Seeking to offer further guidance about what data governments and other entities should open to the public, and how that information can be best used, the Open Knowledge Foundation released an updated version of its Open Data Handbook (http://opendatahandbook.org/). First published in 2012, the online resource features a guide geared toward people with limited knowledge about the jargon and issues associated with open data, as well as other resources, such as case studies and a library of articles, videos and presentations.

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