Open data and charities

Hall, Wendy, Shadbolt, Nigel, Tiropanis, Thanassis, O'Hara, Kieron and Davies, Tim . (2012) Open data and charities. Oxford, GB, Nominet Trust, 87pp. (Nominet Trust State of the Art Reviews).


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Open data involves a paradigm shift in the way organisations manage their information and data: moving from a default of charities keeping data resources locked up in underused internal systems, to building a shared ‘Web of Data’. The emergence of the open data movement has supported powerful new models of creativity, innovation and
public engagement.

Although most of the recent stories of progress and success in the open data field come from government and research where open data is more established, this report sets out to explain the ways in which open data is increasingly coming to play a role in the charitable sector. Existing open government data can be used by charities to add
value to their work, to target services better, to improve advocacy and fundraising, and to support knowledge sharing and collaboration between different charities and agencies. Crowdsourcing of open data also offers a new way for charities to gather intelligence, and a wide range of freely available online tools can support charities to
analyse open data resources. Realising the potential of open data will require charities to meet a number of technical and organisational challenges. Indeed many charities will need to address key issues relating to open data, whether they choose to pursue benefits from open data or not (as regulatory, funding and performance indication is
published online by researchers, by government and by others in the sector).

This report reviews open data as it relates to the charitable sector, drawing on long experience of developing open data in research and government, as well as early work
exploring open data with charities and third-sector organisations. It defines open data, describes the background context of a knowledge economy, and outlines key
opportunities and challenges of open data in the charity sector.

On the basis of this overview and analysis of the field, the report sets out in more detail a number of options for the further development of open data practices in the
charitable sector, via five recommendations derived from the analysis.

Item Type: Monograph (Technical Report)
Related URLs:
Keywords: open data, charities, linked data, data sharing
Subjects: H Social Sciences > HM Sociology
Divisions : Faculty of Physical Sciences and Engineering > Electronics and Computer Science
Faculty of Social and Human Sciences > Social Sciences
ePrint ID: 341346
Accepted Date and Publication Date:
20 July 2012Published
Date Deposited: 20 Jul 2012 12:03
Last Modified: 31 Mar 2016 14:31
Further Information:Google Scholar

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