in e-Gov, General, Open data

Implement open data for EU institutions

Jonathan Gray of the Open Knowledge Foundation participated in a conference of the Communia project, a European thematic network on the digital public domain. In a great post about the meeting at the OKFN blog, he recommends two improvements to the current PSI work; 1: Broaden the scope of the PSI Directive to include publicly funded cultural heritage organisations and 2: Broaden the evidence base for opening up PSI.

A third recommendation

An important value of public sector information is the increased transparency in government decision making. A European Union directive only affects member states and not EU institutions. We are therefore at risk of missing out on increased transparency in EU institutions that the PSI directive may bring to governments in the member states. Also, government transparency is often considered to be a contributing factor in reducing corruption.

Therefore, it would be great if there was a plan, similar to the PSI directive, that made sure that EU institutions also started providing machine readable data in order to increase transparency and reduce the risk of corruption.

Currently, it seems to be up to each institution to do what they want. Maybe that is why the Publications Office of the European Union decided to charge  for access to electronic versions of the EUR-Lex database (that contains the directives and other legal acts). This move makes it difficult for new actors in the legal information industry to include EU data in their products which leads to reduced competition.

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  1. Implement open data for EU institutions. Jonathan Gray of the Open Knowledge Foundation participated in a conference of the Communia project, a European thematic network on the digital public domain.