On 24 and 25 May, the third annual South Eastern Europe Dialogue on Internet Governance (SEEDIG) took place in Ohrid, in the former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia. Open Data was one of the central themes discussed during this two-day event. There was a specific session dedicated to Open Data, during which representatives of Albania, Bulgaria, the former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia, Romania and Serbia shared experiences.
Every country delivered a short presentation, in which they highlighted their data portal, use cases, lessons learned and opportunities for cooperation. The presentation of the Bulgarian experience on Open Data can be found here. As a further input to the discussions, various European Data Portal resources were used, such as the Open Data Maturity in Europe Report 2016 and the resources in the Factsheets & Reports section.
The two-day event ended with some key take-aways:
- Involvement of non-state actors in the process of opening data is necessary, as they are intended users of Open Data and can provide suggestions on how to make Open Data beneficial to all users;
- Public institutions should assist citizens in understanding how they can make use of Open Data for their benefit;
- Challenges and lessons learned from Open Data experiences include centralised architectures for portals and visible licensing for the use of published datasets;
- Open Data initiatives should be led by the people, especially by young entrepreneurs and students, not only by the government.
Would you like to know more about this event? Take a look at the event website!