On February 22, participants in the second annual International Open Data Hackathon will gather around the globe to liberate, analyze and publish data in order to “show support for and encourage the adoption of open data policies by the world’s local, regional and national governments.” (For more information, please visit opendataday.org.)
While there isn’t an organized Hackathon in Detroit, the democratization of data is very close to our mission here at D3. It increases government transparency and accountability, and can be a powerful tool in solving important civic problems. For example, we partnered with the City of Detroit Building, Safety Engineering and Environmental Department (BSEED) in 2013 to open demolition permit data. This effort allowed us to create an interactive mapping platform, which not only increased accessibility, but also opened communication channels with residents.
Governments are legally required to provide a variety of information to citizens, but all too often it is released in formats that are of little use to those who would benefit from it most. Analyzing data scraped from multiple sources and making them presentable requires a lot of time and knowledge about these sources. Therefore, Open Data Day is really about accessibility, persuading governments to release data through platforms that are useful to multiple constituencies. One great example we’ve seen recently is the new Census Bureau API.
Leave us a comment letting us know whether you plan on participating in Open Data Day, and what is on your data wish list.
- What data do you want to access in order to better perform your work?
- What form would you like that data to take – spreadsheets, APIs, other spatial or visual representations?
- How would you prefer to access that data – Internet mobile app, or other published form?
Thank you for participating!
Please check back next week for more information about what’s happening at Data Driven Detroit.