I have written before about the importance of the Open Data Institute in What do President Obama, the inventor of the Internet and Open Data have in common? It’s still worthy a quick reminder on what Open Data is (below) plus here is a link to a great overview read “Open Data in 60 Seconds” from The World Bank Open Data Toolkit project:
Data is considered to be “open” if anyone can freely use, re-use and redistribute it, for any purpose, without restrictions.
I am constantly in awe of the findings studies predict both social and economic benefits Open Data can bring eg: an estimated $3-5 trillion in economic value annually across seven sectors in the United States alone by McKinsey Global Institute. Below is an infographic that visually describes the social impact story, there are many great stories of impactful uses of open data out there as well, worth investigating:
Armed with understanding the potential Open Data holds it’s awesome to see new apps and tools being developed including the ODI’s new Open Data Maturity Model Tool which provides a guided path for organisations who are Producers of Open Data. What I like the most about this Tool is at can be used by organisations at any stage of their Open Data journey – from the outset of their or as an assessment against their progress over time:
The open data maturity model is a way to assess how well an organisation publishes and consumes open data, and identifies actions for improvement.
Cool tool, where do I start?
Dying to get stuck in I registered, which is easy and didn’t have any hooks or nasty terms (as you would expect), then got straight into the assessment itself. Once you get started there is a handy dashboard with progress bar, number of questions per category indicator and as I found going backwards and forwards a navigation format.
You can customise your assessment and there is a guide (which I recommend you read first because I didn’t and could have benefited from some of the context) which explains the methodology, maturity score, approach and all of those important elements that create trust along with how to perform an assessment. From here I just got stuck in and am still having fun navigating through the process.
I was (am still am) a massive fan of MIKE 2.0 open Methodology, which as a crowdsourced Wiki did have a few limitations including detail on how maturity models and measurements were calculated, the Open Data Institute make a point of expanding those elements within their guide.
A ‘maturity model’ generally provides a framework that allows an organisation to assess how well its processes conform to industry best practices. The model acts as an independent benchmark that allows organisations to score their maturity, usually in a number of related areas. The Open Data Maturity Model has been designed to specifically focus on how open data practice impacts on an organisation. A completed assessment against this model will give an organisation a maturity score for a number of important activities, namely how data is released, how it is governed and how datasets are valued. The score will reflect the maturity of the organisation’s processes in a specific area and can be used to identify areas of improvement and set measurable targets.
It doesn’t matter how mature your organisation is today
Data as we know is growing and changing prolifically, some organisations are struggling to get a handle on governance, classification, structured processes and really leveraging this valuable asset let alone commencing their Open Data Journey. If that’s you I suggest you can use this tool as a guide within the context of a wider Data Maturity framework.
If your organisation is committed to and has embraced Open Data no matter where you are on the journey or how mature you are now you can use this tool. It can assist you with communicating with stakeholders and providing demonstrable evidence of continuous improvement.
This tool is designed for Producers of Open Data vs Consumers but I can see how the latter could benefit too. I will report back once I’ve had a more serious crack at the tool but was just so excited I had to share! so you can start using it too. Enjoy, Vic.
Victoria usually blogs about business over at OptimalHQ.com but as a passionate advocate for Open Data, Open Standards and Open Source and their benefits her Information Management background keeps her connected to initiatives in this space – and result in the occasional blog.
Victoria is always happy to speak on Open Data with Business and Government groups, feel free to contact her firstname.lastname@example.org if you are keen to hear more on this topic.