WASHINGTON (August 18, 2014) – States that make government data freely available for analysis, not only increase transparency, but also promote data-driven innovation that can lead to positive impacts for the economy while improving the quality of life for citizens.
State Open Data Policies and Portals, a new report by the Center for Data Innovation, provides a snapshot of states’ efforts to create open data policies and online portals and ranks them on their progress. The six top-scoring states are Hawaii, Illinois, Maryland, New York, Oklahoma, and Utah. Each has established an open data policy which requires that a variety of government data be published on their open data portals in a machine-readable format. States creating new open data policies, or refreshing old ones, have many opportunities to learn from the experiences of these early adopters in order to fully realize the benefits of data-driven innovation.
“There are some clear leaders and laggards among states in the open data movement,” says Daniel Castro, Director of the Center, an affiliate of the Information Technology and Innovation Foundation. “State policymakers should pay attention. Given the potential benefits from open data, the creation of effective open data policies and portals just makes good political and economic sense.”
The report, which was coauthored by Castro and Laura Drees, a policy intern with the Center, ranked states based on the existence and quality of open data policies and open data portals. To date, 24 states have set up open data portals, while 10 have comprehensive open data policies. The authors also offered recommendations for states wanting to improve their open data policies such as amending government transparency laws that already exist to include open data principles.
“Opening up government data not only helps lead to better governance and oversight, but it also enables third parties to leverage that data in developing applications and businesses that address public and private needs,” Castro adds.
The Information Technology and Innovation Foundation (ITIF) is a non-profit, non-partisan think tank whose mission is to formulate and promote public policies to advance technological innovation and productivity internationally, in Washington, and in the states. Recognizing the vital role of technology in ensuring prosperity, ITIF focuses on innovation, productivity, and digital economy issues. Learn more at www.itif.org.