This Week: The Present, Past and Future of Open Data

The US General Services Administration took the opportunity last week to look back at the progress made during the last five years since data.gov was launched. The statistics show that what was originally seen as a pilot have become more permanent and data.gov has seen 4.5 million unique visitors, 105,000 data collections, and 447,000 data resources. But GSA recognizes that the focus needs to move from simply making data open, to bolstering data use. Now they want to hear how the data has been used. They’re asking for videos, blogs or tweets (#OpenDataStory) about what you’ve done with data.gov.

data.gov

While the GSA is looking five years back, others are looking forward to the new data frontier, to post-2015 to be exact. A new initiative, The Post-2015 Data Test, will support the ‘data revolution’ as part of the post-2015 framework to research what data is available currently and how to practically gather the key indicators that will be so important for reaching the highlighted goals of Poverty, Employment and Inclusive Growth, Governance and Human Rights, Environmental Sustainability, Disaster Resilience, Global Partnership for Sustainable Development, Energy and Infrastructure, and Education.

Meanwhile, we see transparency heading towards large corporations, and many claim that there are reasons why these large corporations should embrace transparency. In a recent post on the World Bank Voices blog, Benjamin Herzberg argues that corporate transparency is the new way of doing business and helps mitigate risks, reduce costs, and improve operational efficiency.

Looking back and looking forward, it appears that transparency and open data aren't just a passing fad. These both are becoming more and more of an integrated part of our institutional processes.

Taryn Davis is an Associate at Development Gateway. Email her your tips to get a shout-out in next week's post. 

Tags: open datadata.govtransparencyGSAWorld BankPost-2015 Data Test