”An open data reboot is needed in Nordic countries”

Av Anders Frick den 19 september, 2017

Nordic countries are no longer at the forefront of the open government data movement. Instead they are stagnating, according the latest findings of the Open Data Barometer from the World Wide Web Foundation.

Ana Brandusescu, based in London, is currently a Research and Policy Officer at the Web Foundation, which believes:

  1. Open data must be for everyone — a right for all;
  2. Open data must be the data people need; and
  3. Open data must be data people can easily use.

While Nordic countries have been open data leaders in the past, they have all taken backward steps this year, according to Brandusescu. “They do not seem to be prioritising open data as highly as before, as shown by their decreasing rankings”, she said.

Comparing Open Data Barometer data for 2015-2016 with 2014-2015 and previous years reveals stagnation in Sweden, as well as the region as a whole.

Ranking of Nordic Countries – Firsth to Fourth Editions of the Open Data Barometer

Ranking of Nordic Countries – Firsth to Fourth Editions of the Open Data Barometer

Some of these trends could also be seen in the Global Open Data Index.

Politicians and other representatives in Sweden are pretty aware of the country’s challenges within the open data area, and in May 2017, the Swedish Agency for Economic and Regional Growth and the Swedish Agency for Public Management were given new assignments intended to strengthen Sweden’s position in open data. Read about the details here.

“Where in place, right to information (RTI) laws should be revised to provide for proactive disclosure that guarantees non-personal government data will be open by default, available in machine-readable formats, and published under open licences that allow the data to be re-used”, says Ana Brandusescu.

Ana works with open data research, policy and practice at the World Wide Web Foundation and is focused on driving a more inclusive use of data and enhancing digital rights through various data, research and policy projects. These include Women’s Rights Online, IDEA – Initiative for Data Equity in Africa and the Open Data Barometer. She also works on open contracting and governance, and artificial intelligence.

During the Nordic Open Data Forum, Ana Brandusescu will present on the need for open data to be inclusive, discuss in more detail why Nordic countries are stagnating and what can be done about it, and explore new opportunities for open data use with artificial intelligence. She will also be co-facilitating the Growing Open Data Ecosystems workshop.


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