The Value of an Open Data Portal
Over the past few years, the way government organisations share their data has changed greatly. Many councils have started to publish data online for everyone to see. By doing this, companies can improve government transparency, increase innovation plus reduce the costs of accessing and sharing data. Most of the data that councils hold today is of a geospatial nature. Which makes uncovering Opendata portals even more important.
The use of OpenData sites is greatly underused. Considering the amount of time and effort that goes into maintaining this data, the goal is to make audiences more aware of these portals. There are many companies across New Zealand that have already implemented OpenData portals:
Canterbury Maps is a public geospatial site that allows the public to access government data in Canterbury, it is run by the 9 district councils plus Environment Canterbury. The OpenData portal found on this website has greatly improved data sharing across Canterbury plus reducing workload for GIS staff as direct data requests are limited. Making the data that Environment Canterbury holds available on this site, means the public has quick access to water quality results, well information, consent data, swimming water quality and much more allowing for greater transparency of this councils data.
Wellington City Councils open data portal holds information related to business, elections, planning, education and lots more
Auckland Transport makes roading, walking paths, cycleways and public transport data available for public use. It allows users to preview the data before downloading and can also be accessed va API REST endpoints.
Marlborough District Council has an open data portal that holds data related to biosecurity, recreation, demographics and much more
Ministry for the Environment has an open data portal that uses the Koordinates platform. Users are also able to preview the data and download in multiple formats. The links to documentation and other useful tools proves to be very helpful for users.
With the increase of internet use, it is a great time to start thinking about sharing spatial data online. Not only does it help increase efficiency of data owners, but it improves transparency of government data.