Do you know exactly how much of your tax money is spent on street lights or on cancer research? What is the shortest, safest and most scenic bicycle route from your home to your work? And what is in the air that you breathe along the way? Where in your region will you find the best job opportunities and the highest number of fruit trees per capita? When can you influence decisions about topics you deeply care about, and whom should you talk to?
New technologies now make it possible to build the services to answer these questions automatically. Much of the data you would need to answer these questions is generated by public bodies. However, often the data required is not yet available in a form which is easy to use. This book is about how to unlock the potential of official and other information to enable new services, to improve the lives of citizens and to make government and society work better.
The notion of open data and specifically open government data - information, public or otherwise, which anyone is free to access and re-use for any purpose - has been around for some years. In 2009 open data started to become visible in the mainstream, with various governments (such as the USA, UK, Canada and New Zealand) announcing new initiatives towards opening up their public information.
This book explains the basic concepts of ‘open data’, especially in relation to government. It covers how open data creates value and can have a positive impact in many different areas. In addition to exploring the background, the handbook also provides concrete information on how to produce open data.
Follow the link to access the full Open Data Handbook.
This text was sourced from the Open Data Handbook.