Are governments finally opening up their data?
On 23 May, the World Wide Web Foundation launched the fourth edition of the Open Data Barometer, providing a global snapshot of how governments are using Open Data for accountability, innovation and social impact.
Covering 115 countries, the study found that early Open Data leaders are stalling, and even backsliding in their delivery of Open Data. The scores of high-ranking Nordic countries and the United States have fallen this year, and also the United Kingdom has seen worrying changes in key policies. Globally, fewer than one in ten datasets studied are fully open - unchanged from last year - showing that most countries are failing to make any progress on delivering vital public information.
The report also shows that data on key accountability metrics such as government spending, public contracts, company ownership and land ownership are among the least open and often of poor quality. Government spending data is open in just 3% of the countries.
Committing to opening up data for accountability, economic growth and social benefits is a long-term process. To stay on the right track, the report suggests that governments must adopt the international Open Data Charter principles, ensuring Open Data programs are consistent, responsible and sustainable through political cycles.
Access the full report here and explore the data online at http://opendatabarometer.org/. You can follow the Web Foundation's updates and analysis on the findings on Twitter @WebFoundation and via the hashtag #ODBarometer.