Open Data in Developing Economies: Toward Building an Evidence Base on What Works and How
By Stefaan G. Verhulst & Andrew Young
Recent years have witnessed considerable speculation about the potential of open data to bring about wide-scale transformation. The bulk of existing evidence about the impact of open data, however, focuses on high-income countries. Much less is known about open data’s role and value in low- and middle-income countries, and more generally about its possible contributions to economic and social development.
Open Data for Developing Economies features in-depth case studies on how open data is having an impact across the developing world-from an agriculture initiative in Colombia to data-driven healthcare projects in Uganda and South Africa to crisis response in Nepal. The analysis built on these case studies aims to create actionable intelligence regarding: (a) the conditions under which open data is most (and least) effective in development, presented in the form of a Periodic Table of Open Data; (b) strategies to maximize the positive contributions of open data to development; and (c) the means for limiting open data’s harms on developing countries.
Ania Calderon, Executive Director, International Open Data Charter
“An empirically grounded assessment that helps us move beyond the hype that greater access to information can improve the lives of people and outlines the enabling factors for open data to be leveraged for development.”
Fernando Perini, Coordinator of the Open Data for Development (OD4D) Network, International Development Research Centre, Canada
“This book is compulsory reading for practitioners, researchers and decision-makers exploring how to harness open data for achieving development outcomes. In an intuitive and compelling way, it provides valuable recommendations and critical reflections to anyone working to share the benefits of an increasingly networked and data-driven society.”
Samhir Vasdev, Digital Development Adviser, IREX
This book offers practical, evidence-based frameworks to help us understand how open data efforts can be designed, implemented, and measured for meaningful impact. With concise language and clear thoughts, this book is an accessible, relevant, and honest read for a broad audience, including practitioners, policymakers, donors, and implementing partners. Anyone seeking to grasp the current state-of-play of the open data landscape, to ground their understanding in practical use-cases, and to move forward armed with actionable frameworks will find value in this book.
The book is an important contribution to understand how Open Data supports economic and social development processes. It does so using real-world examples in multiple domains and geographic areas. By leveraging the power of demonstration effects, it is a highly useful addition to the arsenal of advocacy tools available to both development and Open Data practitioners.
Table of contents
List of Abbreviations
Part I: Open Data For Development
The Relevance of Open Data for Developing Economies
The Impact of Open Data on Developing Economies
The Impact of Open Data in Developing Economies across Sectors
Part II: Case Studies
Open Data’s Impact on Improving Government
Burundi’s Open RBF
Open Development Cambodia
Open Data’s Impact on Empowering Citizens
Tanzania’s Open Education Dashboards
South Africa’s Medicine Price Registry
Open Data’s Impact on Creating Opportunity
Jamaica’s Interactive Community Mapping
Open Data’s Impact on Solving Public Problems
Nepal Earthquake Recovery
Paraguay’s Dengue Prediction
Part III: Conclusion
Leveraging Open Data as a New Asset for Development
Appendix A: Input Received