Big & Open Data

Like many other major cities, Amsterdam has an active Open Data programme. This consists of a number of separate activities, all required to stimulate the development of Open Data. Key concerns include the decryption of data, the creation of sample applications and the organisation of a location (platform) for the data. Data fuels the information society. Publicly-available data that can be used and combined to provide Amsterdammers with new insights and the chance to make decisions based upon actual facts and figures. As such, Open Data is one of the core activities of Amsterdam Smart City.

What is Open Data?
Or more specifically: what is public Open Data? Ever since the concept of ‘governance’ emerged, data management became of vital importance. Whether it concerns the available quantities of food, the collection of taxes or population registration, governments have historically played an important role when it comes to collecting and managing data. In more modern times, things have been taken to an even higher level. A visit to the Statistics Netherlands website (www.cbs.nl) gives an impression of contemporary data collection and a good indication of the sheer volume of data that is now collected in the Netherlands. Much of the data is available for use by the general public. But is this Open Data? Typically not. The government’s definition of Open Data is that Open Data sources should be raw data from the public sector:

  • which are public;
  • which are not subject to copyrights or other third party rights;
  • which are financed from public funds, especially made ​​available to carry out this specific task;
  • which preferably meet 'open standards' (no restrictions regarding use by ICT users or ICT providers) and are preferably computer readable so that search engines can find information in documents.

Data that can be traced back to individuals, that contains state secrets or that may compromise commercial confidentiality is clearly not ‘Open’ Data. Dutch freedom of information legislation (Wet Openbaarheid Bestuur [WOB]) is clear about this.

Data fuels the information society. Publicly-available data that can be used and combined to provide Amsterdammers with new insights and the chance to make decisions based upon actual facts and figures.





Present projects


Previous projects