1. Virtual Event on 9/18-9/19: A Virtual Chat between China and US on Open Data

    Note: the following content is an excerpt from the original article written by one of the organizers, Bruce Haupt.

    On September 18-19, a group of Chinese open data and urban innovation experts, along with a group of U.S. open data and civic innovation leaders, will meet online to have a chat about open data and open innovation in each country. 

    This virtual event is designed to bring together people from different cultures with similar interests. We’ve already signed on experts from companies, governments, nonprofits, and start-ups, plus a bunch of interested citizens who want to learn and collaborate with their counterparts across the Pacific Ocean. Our team of volunteer organizers represents cities across China and the U.S.

    The inspiration for the event came from both conversations and collaboration among a small network of Chinese and U.S. citizens interested in open data innovation, along with a general “Why not?” following the recent National Day of Civic Hacking in the U.S.

    In China, Michelle Li 李雯 of China’s Urban Data Party and Feng Gao 高丰 of Open Data China have been crucial leaders in the effort. Mart Van De Ven and Wai-Chung Bastien of Open Data Hong Kong have also been instrumental in developing the concept.

    In the U.S., we wouldn’t be anywhere without the leadership of those in Houston such as Matthew Shailer of the City of Houston Mayor’s Office of International Trade & Development (along with people including Kelly DoweAndy Icken, and Jesse Bounds). We’ve also received great support early on from organizations like Socrata and Local Data. And naturally, a huge thanks to Jeff Reichman, Open Houston, and January Advisors too!

    In addition to the organizing team, we’re also incredibly lucky to have a very diverse group of interesting people and exciting organizations participating and supporting the program. For those in the U.S. especially, I think there’s a lot to learn from the Chinese organizations participating – both in terms of what open data means in China, as well as gaining a better understanding of Chinese culture and innovations more broadly.


  2. First Edition of Desarrollando América Latina in El Salvador

    Desarrollando America Latina will launch for the first time in El Salvador.  We created the open data portal, which promotes the use of open data for apps, transparency, and smart cities, among others. 

    This year, we want developers, designers, journalist, etc., to use or generate open data in order to create civic apps. 

    More information please see: http://2014.desarrollandoamerica.org/ 


  3. As an Open Knowledge Local Group in Kenya, We noticed that we will need to dedicate a page to curate the Open Data eco-system in Kenya. This page will be frequently updated, however, it will aim to work as a central reference for the various Open Data systems and initiatives within the scope of Kenya, and East Africa, where possible.

    I would love to hear back on any suggestions folks may have on something that I may not have covered within this article. Especially folks in Kenya :)


  4. OKFN El Salvador Will Join A Panel about Open Data at The Seventh Regional Preparatory Meeting for The Internet Governance Forum (IGF)

    I am proud to share that I have been invited as a panelist for the Seventh Regional Preparatory Meeting for the Internet Governance Forum (IGF) that will take place in San Salvador, July 16-18.  I will join the Panel of Open Data and Open Access with Caroline Burle from W3C (Brazil) and Pilar Saenz from Fundacion Karisma (Colombia).  The moderator will be Pedro Ivo Ferraz da Silva from the Division of the Information Society of the Ministry of Foreing Affairs of Brazil.

    This is the first time I am invited as an OKFN Ambassador to a meeting of this relevance, and I will be sharing about open data in El Salvador, Access to Public Information and the future that we want to built with open knowledge as a key fact. 

    You can follow this event at #LACIGF7 

    More information about the event is available at: http://www.lacigf.org/en/lacigf7/index.html

    My best to all! 

    Iris Palma | @irispalma11


  5. Open Knowledge Senegal Winner of the Open Society

    Open Society Initiative for West Africa (OSIWA) and Upstart / Incubator CTIC Dakar are launching a Technologies for Good Governance program named “OPEN SOCIETIC”. The purpose of this initiative is the use of ICTs for a better interaction between citizens and decision makers. This dialogue process must insist on the fight against corruption and socially aware civic engagement, as well as good governance in the education, health, and agriculture sectors.

    During the “Technologies for Good Governance Forum”, a regional event organized at the French Institute of Dakar on the 25th of July. SENEGAL OUVERT, a local Open Knowledge Senegal initiative, is one of six projects financed from a grant of $10,000 and monitored during 6 months by CTIC.

    SENEGAL OUVERT is an open data portal to provide more transparency, fight against corruption and promote citizen engagement and good governance.

    Thanks to all the project team and good luck for the future.


  6. Open Data Portal (ODP) Austria Launched on 1st of July

    We are happy that the OKF Austrian Chapter together with Wikimedia Austria and the Cooperation OGD Austria has launched the Austrian Data Portal for NON-Government Data last week, on the 1st of July 2014 - see: http://www.opendataportal.at and for those who understand German here comes a nice video about it: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=lPIyCIFjZro. 

    ODP Austria - all you can data!

    The ODP Austria is the national data portal for data from industry / economy, the GLAM sector, science & research and education as well as society. We started with ~ 35 data sheets (around 55 data sets) last week coming from political parties, big enterprises, small NGOs and academic institutions - and as a launch surprise already presented 2 small web-apps ;)

    ODP is strongly interconnected with the national Austrian Data Catalogue operated by the Austrian Government.

    The ODP is organised along 14 topics in a similar way as data.gov in the U.S. is structured and offers data sets, apps, data tools and news on open data issues along these 14 themes.

    Any feedback directly on the portal or to info [at ] opendataportal.at is very welcome. Best regards - Martin (ODP and AT Chapter)


  7. Upfront FOI Fees To Be Abolished in Ireland

    Dear All,

    I am delighted to share exciting news with you.

    It has been announced today that the Irish Government decided to abolish upfront fees for Freedom of Information (FOI) requests:

    Minister Brendan Howlin said:-

    “My assessment of FOI fees reform was strongly informed by the issues raised in the pre-legislative scrutiny of my proposals on FOI carried out by the Oireachtas Finance, Public Expenditure and Reform Committee the FOI Bill and the debate on the Bill during its passage through the Oireachtas, as well as the views of civil society participating to the preparation of Ireland’s Open Government Partnership (OGP) National Action Plan.”

    Open Knowledge Ireland has played key role in making this happen and we warmly welcome this announcement.

    Congratulations to all who played a role. Special thanks for hard work and persistence to Flora Fleischer, Gavin Sheridan and Fred Logue!
    Best regards,

    Denis Parfenov


  8. I Encuentro por el Conocimiento Abierto en El Salvador

    In line with the OKFestival (in Berlin) and the Latin American and Caribbean Internet Governance Forum (in San Salvador), we will celebrate for the first time ever the I Encuentro por el Conocimiento Abierto en El Salvador (I Open Knowledge Meeting in El Salvador), which will take place on July 15th, 2014 in La Casa Tomada (thanks to the support of the Cultural Center of Spain in El Salvador). 

    This meeting is coordinated by OKFN El Salvador, INSERT, Creative Commons El Salvador and Association of Librarians of El Salvador. 

    We will be discussing Open Knowledge, Open Data, Creative Commons Licenses, Open Education and will sign the Declaration for Open Knowledge in El Salvador. 

    We hope to promote these meetings every year in our country. 

    You can know more about us at:

    INSERT: @insert_sv

    OKFN El Salvador: @OKFNelsalvador

    CC: @cc_slv

    ABES: @abeselsalvador

    The website of the event is: www.conocimientoabierto.org/encuentro (will be available online on July 5th). 

    My best! 

    Iris Palma - Ambassador OKFN El Salvador



  9. What Has Open Data Got to Do with Education?

    The Open Education Working Group will be running an Open Knowledge Community Session entitled What has open data got to do with education?

    The session will take place on June 26, 2014: 08:00 EDT/12:00 UTC/13:00 BST/14:00 CEST in Google Hangouts [link for session]. It will be facilitated by Heather Leson (community builder at Open Knowledge) with talks from:

    • Marieke Guy (Open Education Working GroupLinkedUp Project)
    • Otavio Ritter (Open education data researcher, Getulio Vargas Foundation, Rio de Janeiro, Brazil). Otavio will be sharing his findings from research for a paper, involving a comparative analysis of schools’ open data in England and Brazil and the availability (transparency) of government information related to primary/secondary education

    There will also be plenty of time for furthering the excellent recent discussion that has taken place on the Open Education mailing list around the value of open data to open education (details).

    We hope to see you there!!

    Google hangout for the session


  10. Proposals of The Greek Charter of Open Knowledge: The Public Consultation of The Greek Action Plan for The Open Government Partnership Initiative

    Open Knowledge Greece (OKF Greece) participated in the open consultation of the “Greek Action Plan for Open Governance 2014 - 2016”, embedded in the Open Government Partnership Initiative. OKF Greece organized, on Tuesday 27/5/2014, in the hall of the Educational Foundation of the Association of Journalists of Daily Newspapers of Macedonia and Thrace, an open workshop to discuss and propose the positions and proposals of the OKF Greece on the National Action Plan. All comments and suggestions that were stated in the meeting are presented below, and will be published in the official platform Opengov.gr (http://www.opengov.gr/ogp/?p=255 in Greek and http://www.opengov.gr/ogp/?p=306 in English).


    Numerous volunteers, students and distinguished professors from Aristotle University of Thessaloniki and University of Macedonia, representing various faculties and departments, attended the meeting, as well with a representative of the Municipality of Thessaloniki. The meeting was greeted via Skype by the CEO of the International Open Knowledge Foundation Dr. Laura James.

    Dr. Charalampos Bratsas, president of the OKF Greece briefly presented the proposed Action Plan and described the way the workshop would evolve, dividing the participants in four (4) working groups that would comment 4 key actions of Greek Action Plan for Open Governance 2014-2016.

    The recommendations and proposals that emerged from the comments, proposals and ideas submitted during the workshop in a GoogleDoc.

    Timelines that visualize the timing of key milestones: