Spread the gospel! Tim Berners-Lee's Open Data Institute goes global

Nonprofit body opens 13 new offices to promote using gov datasets


The Open Data Institute, an organisation founded by web daddy Sir Tim Berners-Lee and AI prof Sir Nigel Shadbolt, has announced it's setting up 13 "nodes" around the world.

The ODI, which is backed with a £10m cash pot provided by taxpayers and based at London's Silicon Roundabout, was created to help businesses use public datasets on crime, weather, education and other assorted stuff, as released by the government.

The organisation claimed that since it kicked off last year it has been "inundated with requests from around the world, asking for support to set up countrywide or regional versions" of the institute.

Blighty will be getting three additional ODI offices, with nodes in Manchester, Brighton and Leeds. Other regional nodes will be set up in Dubai, Chicago, North Carolina, Paris and Trenton. The ODI is also running two countrywide trials in partnership with NGOs in the US and Canada and another three nodes will focus on communications, based in Gothenburg, Moscow and Buenos Aires.

"The fact that only one year on, cities and countries around the world want to adopt the ODI model is evidence of how quickly the open data revolution is spreading," enthused the UK's Cabinet Office minister, Francis Maude.

"The establishment of ODI Nodes in UK cities will help embed an open data culture in communities, and bring the economic benefits of new and innovative data-led businesses that will help the UK compete in the global race," Maude added.

The new nodes will be adopting an "ODI charter" to show their commitment to open data business, publishing and collaboration, the institute said.

As well as the £10m funding over five years, which comes from the UK's Technology Strategy Board, ODI has also bagged $750,000 from the Omidyar Network, set up by eBay founder Pierre Omidyar. As a non-profit, it's hoping to bulk out to its coffers with other funding and by raising revenue through membership subscriptions. ®

Similar topics

Narrower topics


Other stories you might like

  • Verizon: Ransomware sees biggest jump in five years
    We're only here for DBIRs

    The cybersecurity landscape continues to expand and evolve rapidly, fueled in large part by the cat-and-mouse game between miscreants trying to get into corporate IT environments and those hired by enterprises and security vendors to keep them out.

    Despite all that, Verizon's annual security breach report is again showing that there are constants in the field, including that ransomware continues to be a fast-growing threat and that the "human element" still plays a central role in most security breaches, whether it's through social engineering, bad decisions, or similar.

    According to the US carrier's 2022 Data Breach Investigations Report (DBIR) released this week [PDF], ransomware accounted for 25 percent of the observed security incidents that occurred between November 1, 2020, and October 31, 2021, and was present in 70 percent of all malware infections. Ransomware outbreaks increased 13 percent year-over-year, a larger increase than the previous five years combined.

    Continue reading
  • Slack-for-engineers Mattermost on open source and data sovereignty
    Control and access are becoming a hot button for orgs

    Interview "It's our data, it's our intellectual property. Being able to migrate it out those systems is near impossible... It was a real frustration for us."

    These were the words of communication and collaboration platform Mattermost's founder and CTO, Corey Hulen, speaking to The Register about open source, sovereignty and audio bridges.

    "Some of the history of Mattermost is exactly that problem," says Hulen of the issue of closed source software. "We were using proprietary tools – we were not a collaboration platform before, we were a games company before – [and] we were extremely frustrated because we couldn't get our intellectual property out of those systems..."

    Continue reading
  • UK government having hard time complying with its own IR35 tax rules
    This shouldn't come as much of a surprise if you've been reading the headlines at all

    Government departments are guilty of high levels of non-compliance with the UK's off-payroll tax regime, according to a report by MPs.

    Difficulties meeting the IR35 rules, which apply to many IT contractors, in central government reflect poor implementation by Her Majesty's Revenue & Customs (HMRC) and other government bodies, the Public Accounts Committee (PAC) said.

    "Central government is spending hundreds of millions of pounds to cover tax owed for individuals wrongly assessed as self-employed. Government departments and agencies owed, or expected to owe, HMRC £263 million in 2020–21 due to incorrect administration of the rules," the report said.

    Continue reading

Biting the hand that feeds IT © 1998–2022