Open government data (OGD) is information contained in government databases and private servers that can be freely accessed, used and republished by people and businesses. OGD is a relatively recent phenomenon but it’s availability and use has grown significantly in recent years. For example, citizens in many countries now regularly access information related to transportation, the environment and security through apps and via other platforms built on OGD. To be used at its full potential, however, OGD services must align with the interests and requirements of users. This research conducted by The Economist Intelligence Unit (EIU) titled Open Government Data: Assessing demand around the world, which is sponsored by the Government Technology Agency of Singapore, seeks to understand how citizens are using OGD and the benefits they expect it to bring to society. This research programme compares OGD uptake and usage across 10 countries (US, UK, South Korea, Taiwan, Singapore, Finland, Mexico, Australia, France and India ) and seeks to identify benefits and opportunities that OGD can offer to citizens.
The findings are based on a survey of 1,000 citizens —100 from each of the target countries. To ensure the validity of opinions all survey respondents were screened for whether they are familiar with, or have used, OGD in the last 12 months. Selection of the survey countries was based on the EIU’s desk research and one or more of the follow criteria: (a) recognized leader in OGD, (b) presence of interesting OGD initiatives, (c) geographic location to capture cultural differences. This survey differs from Open Data Barometer and Global Open Data Index in a number of ways. First, countries in this survey are not ranked in any particular order, rather general sentiment is gauged and global trends are identified. Second, the research findings are not based on external data or global indexes but solely on the opinions of OGD users living in the countries under investigation.