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Traversing Digital BabelInformation, E-Government, and Exchange$
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Alon Peled

Print publication date: 2014

Print ISBN-13: 9780262027878

Published to MIT Press Scholarship Online: May 2015

DOI: 10.7551/mitpress/9780262027878.001.0001

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Why Open Data Finds Agencies’ Doors Closed

Why Open Data Finds Agencies’ Doors Closed

Chapter:
(p.57) 3 Why Open Data Finds Agencies’ Doors Closed
Source:
Traversing Digital Babel
Author(s):

Alon Peled

Publisher:
The MIT Press
DOI:10.7551/mitpress/9780262027878.003.0004

The chapter defines open data and describes the inception, evolution and vision of open data programs in the US and worldwide. The chapter then presents a thorough empirical analysis of the US open data program’s performance. It is found that whilst US agencies appeared to support the program, a closer look reveals that their participation was underwhelming: most data was supplied by a tiny number of agencies; data was not updated; data was of low quality or already available elsewhere. The chapter then examines the participation of government agencies in open data programs outside the US, finding a similar pattern of resistance to provide free access to high-quality data. The chapter concludes by suggesting that agencies did not fully cooperate with the open data program because information is a precious asset that they work hard to accumulate and are reluctant to release without compensation.

Keywords:   open government data (OGD), government agencies, public sector, information sharing, open government, e-government, USA, UK, EU, Barack Obama

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