A Week of Open Data in Buenos Aires

Exciting events are happening in the world of open data. This week, the GovLab is in Buenos Aires for several surrounding the International Open Data Conference (IODC). These events will serve as a showcase for all the advances and innovations that the field has made.

Third Open Data Research Symposium

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Activities kicked off on September 25th with the 3rd Open Data Research Symposium. Co-organized by GovLab, the symposium gave researchers an opportunity to share their theories and findings on open data’s value. Discussions amongst the nearly 150 attendees spanned 11 paper presentations and five workshops, with discussions exploring everything from data accountability to public service delivery.

In the coming days, GovLab will share more insight surfaced by the global scholars who convened to shape the open data research agenda going forward.

International Open Data Conference


Following the symposium from September 27th to the 28th, GovLab will attend the International Open Data Conference. A seminal event for the field, the conference will give anyone, from researchers to journalists to policymakers, a chance to gather to define strategies to advance open data globally.

The conference underscores that open data is no longer the exclusive domain of scientists and analysts but everyone.

Stefaan Verhulst, GovLab’s Chief Research and Development Officer, will participate in three panels. The first, Open Data and the Private Sector: Breaking Down the Walls will discuss how governments and NGOs can solve public problems through engagement with the private sector.

It will be held Thursday, September 27th at 2:00 PM and include Joel Gurin, President and Founder of the Center for Open Data Enterprise, Carla Bonina, Assistant Professor at the Surrey Business School, Leonida Mutuka of AODN, and Jeni Tennison, CEO of the Open Data Institute.

The second panel is titled Private Data for Public Good and will be held Thursday, September 27th at 4:00 PM. Stefaan will moderate a panel to discuss how private-sector data can drive public innovation and better understand the value of Data Collaboratives.

The panel includes Natalia Adler, Data, Research, and Policy Manager at UNICEF, Leo Ferres, Professor of Computer Science at the Data Science Institute of la Universidad del Desarrollo, and Paula Vargas, Privacy and Public Policy Manager for Latin America at Facebook.

The third panel, planned for September 28th at 11:00 AM, will discuss Putting Open Data Measurement to Use. Together with Bárbara Ubaldi, Danny Lammerhirt, Ana Brandusescu, and Amparo Ballivian, Stefaan will talk about the advantages and disadvantages of different metrics and indicators, the implications of their coexistence, and more. The session will discuss the methodological possibilities of better aligning these tools.

Andrew Young, GovLab’s Knowledge Director, will also participate on a panel, scheduled for September 27th at 4:00 PM. It will focus on the issue of Data Ethics and the role of data stewards in building and maintaining the trust of citizens. The panel will be hosted by Jeni Tennison, CEO of the Open Data Institute, and include Martin Wasserman of Civic House as well as Professor Cathie Woteski of Iowa State University.

All these panels will give GovLab an opportunity to present and discuss its work related to both open data and Data Collaboratives, a relationship in which participants from different sectors exchange their data for public good. Throughout the conference, GovLab will be looking to data practitioners for insight into how it can further enhance its research and ensure that private data is used effectively.

GovLab Index on Open Data – 2018 Edition

Finally, on the occasion of ODRS and IODC, GovLab launched a new GovLab Index on Open Data. The GovLab Index, inspired by Harper’s Index, provides a series of illuminating statistics on issues at the nexus of technology and governance. This year’s edition of the Index on Open Data provides insight into value and impact, public perceptions, efforts and involvement, demand for open data, and national and subnational availability of datasets. We hope this compendium will prove useful for the researchers, policymakers, practitioners, and others participating in IODC and related events.

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