Open Data Monthly Review 9/2011

A review of latest news and blog posts in the field of open data.


Finnish Big Brother Awards 2011
Electronic Frontier Finland Effi ry has given the Finnish 2011 Big Brother Awards on Sunday, 11th September. This year’s Big Brothers are Ministry of Internal affairs (public sector category), Google (business category) and the former Minister of Justice Tuija Brax (individual category). Special Life Work Award went to Jouni Laiho, civil servant in the Ministry of Internal Affairs.

Independent Transparency and Privacy Review
The British Cabinet Office has published an independent review of the impact of transparency on privacy. The review was commissioned to inform the Government’s approach to the release of data as part of the Transparency Agenda.

Using Open Data To Understand War And Peace
A new project, funded by the U.S. Department of Defense, will make hard-to-find data on war and conflict available to academics–and help crowdsource military tactics.

Maude: ‘open data reducing death rates’
Government minister Francis Maude has said the coalition’s approach to opening access to public data will not only transform public services, but in some cases has seen a reduction in death rates.

Open Data Key to Driving Public Sector Modernisation
The modernisation of the public sector lies in openly publishing data say a panel of public sector experts. Publishing data will allow developers to create new ways for the sector to reach their audience at little cost to the organisations themselves. This is the view of a panel of public sector experts at a recent round table debate held by hosting specialist UKFast.

Open Data Center Alliance Holds Cloud, Data Center Best Practices Contest
Open Data Center Alliance announced it has launched “Conquering the Cloud Challenge,” a competition to find best practices for cloud and data center solutions with a $10,000 grand prize. The contest is open to corporations, universities and non-profits which are in the planning stages, developing solutions, or have already implemented cloud-based solutions.

Being open about aid
Transparency seems to be the new standard in the development aid industry. After facing harsh criticism in recent years for being ineffective and wasteful, many NGOs now prioritise openness and honesty over how they spend their money. And it’s not only NGOs opening up, this week the Foreign Ministry of the Netherlands announced that the majority of data about Dutch aid budgets will be accessible to the general public.

Privacy review sounds alarm on open data
The government’s open data programme could pose threats to individual privacy unless immediate steps are taken, an independent review for the Cabinet Office warns today. The review, entitled Transparent Government, Not Transparent Citizens, by Professor Kieron O’Hara of Southampton University, warns that the distinction between private and public data could be threatened by the government’s proposed “right to data”.

Open Data Center Alliance, Open Compute Project Team Up on Standards
Data center organizations The Open Data Center Alliance and Open Compute Project announced they are collaborating to define system and data center specifications. The partnership is designed to drive adoption of efficient data center and infrastructure design, stimulate rapid hardware innovation, and encourage greater openness and industry collaboration.

E.U. Sets 2013 Deadline for Open Source Public Data Mining Portal
Sticking with her original deadline announced last year, European Commission Vice President Neelie Kroes told a European interoperability standards forum that a public portal for access to government and public data from across the continent is on track to go online in Spring 2012. Following that, the next stage in Comm. Kroes’ agenda includes an ambitious project to launch a community-built, crowd-sourced public data platform for all of Europe.


Building an Open Data Repository: Lessons and Challenges by Limor Peer
The Internet has transformed scholarly research in many ways. Open access to data and other research output has been touted as a crucial step toward transparency and quality in science. This paper takes a critical look at what it takes to share social science research data.

Evaluating the Impact of Open Data Websites by Eleonore Fournier-Tombs
Over the past few years, the steady increase in the number of government open data websites has led to a call for appropriate evaluation tools. While some have expressed optimism as to the potential of government open data, others have been more hesitant. This paper therefore aims to answer the following question: how does one evaluate the success of open data websites in reaching democratic objectives?


ComputerworldUK: Open Data: Help “Make it Real” and Making Open Data Real: A Response

Demos: The future of open data The Economics of Open Data – Mini-Case, Transit Data & TransLink

Global Integrity: Is Open Data a Good Idea for the Open Government Partnership?

The Guardian: Public data’s Desert Island challenge: which dataset would you pick?

Library Journal: How the W3C Has Come To Love Library Linked Data

NewScientist: Subversive apps help citizens fight state silencing

OpenGongress: Economic benefits of open data

Open Knowledge Foundation: How to Build an Open Data Initiative for your City

Spatial Sustain: Why should open geospatial data and software be taken seriously?

techPresident: Analysis Based on Open Data Finds Many Federal Websites Are Behind the Times

techPresident: The Europe Roundup: A Good Week For Open Data

Wellcome Trust: #Solo11: Open data = sooner treatments?


Shayne Burgess: Build Great Experiences on Any Device with OData

Alexander Howard: Open Data + Maps Tell The Local Story of Unemployment, Recovery, Spending

Alexander Howard: On open data, open government and the Open Government Partnership

John Karr and William S. Cole: Open Data Opens New Potential for International Development

Todd Park: Unleashing the Power of Data and Innovation To Improve Health

Tom Steinberg: How to create sustainable open data projects with purpose

Dick Vinegar: Power to the patients, even the reluctant ones

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