Friday, March 27, 2015

Rise of the Nodes

Caribbean open spatial data portals now exist and may be growing. Almost all seem to be based on open source Geonode software, backed by the World Bank OpenDRI, BoundlessGeo/ OpenGeo and others - an initiative that may have started at the CAPRA project in Central America. In the Caribbean, open data nodes can be found in Trinidad & Tobago, Haiti, Dominica, Saint Lucia, Guyana, Antigua and Jamaica. (also holds few data for other islands) and a World Bank project - CHaRIM (holds data for Belize, Dominica, Grenada, Saint Lucia and St. Vincent and the Grenadines). There's also a small experiment (mine) in open public health data using Google Fusion Tables for mapping. Would like to hear of the other open data outposts out there - spatial or not.

Wednesday, March 04, 2015

Open By Default

It's very encouraging that global development banks continue to find value in making public spending data, open data, in pursuit of improved transparency, combating corruption and better communication with the public. Many have begun their effort with GIS/ maps, e.g. the World Bank (WB) and the African Development Bank (AfDB) - maps tell stories well. Over and above the medium(s) has arisen a principle: 'Open by Default'. The  Open Government Partnership (OGP) which works to get governments to commit to openness has the support of the WB, ADB, OECD, IDB and UNDP, and has expressed such a principle. As this excellent summary by the World Bank states: 'Showing where the money goes is becoming the new normal.'