Did you know that almost all the information about the city, its services, facilities, population, economy, environment, etc., exists digitally? By making this information freely available in the form of open data, new services can be developed for residents, businesses and visitors. An advantage for the Smart City!
Why and how are data made open?
Digital data are extremely useful for public institutions, but also for researchers, the press, citizens and businesses. However, they are not always available. Open data refers to all data or public information of a non-personal nature that is collected electronically by governments in the context of a public mission and with public resources.
Open data offers numerous advantages in terms of administrative simplification: greater transparency in the functioning of the government, ensuring increased efficiency and innovative re-use by citizens, businesses, academics and organisations, whether for commercial purposes or not. This can create new wealth, for example by combining the data to develop applications. Specifically, such an open data policy can create 180 million euros and 1,500 new jobs in the Brussels economy.
In order to centralise all the data from the Brussels-Capital Region, the BRIC (Brussels Regional Informatics Centre) has developed the portal opendatastore.brussels. It gives free access to all data provided by the Brussels authorities and their partners in various formats, particularly in the areas of mobility, health, environment, cartography, etc. This portal is designed for the administrations of the region and the municipalities, but also their private partners.
How can open data be used?
Do you want to use the data collected by the Brussels government? Via the portal site opendatastore.brussels, you can submit requests regarding the provision of data which has hitherto not been made available by the public administrations.
These data are made available in electronic form by using open standards and can thus be re-used free of charge or at marginal cost. The re-use of data may be linked to a licence which sets out the conditions of use (such as source indication and date of publication) in order to protect legal certainty for re-users without restricting the possibilities of re-use.
How does Easybrussels contribute specifically to Brussels policy on open data?
The missions of the agency for administrative simplification are described in the strategical objectives of Easybrussels. They detail that the agency has to:
- meet public services to promote open data and the portal site.
- support the various public services by making an inventory of the existing and future data provided on the portal site.
- together with the BRIC, following up the requests of users and the responses to these requests by the various public administrations.
- promote open data at various events such as Open Belgium and hackathons.