Founded in 2011, OpenNorth started as a small Montreal-based nonprofit with expertise in open data and civic technology. Today OpenNorth’s growing interdisciplinary team leads national and international multi-stakeholder partnerships on implementing values-driven approaches and solutions that do more than just utilize data and networked infrastructure to make decisions. We work with a wide diversity of innovative and connected public administrations and community stakeholders to build their efficient, ethical, and collaborative use of data and technology to solve complex problems. We sustain global peer-to-peer networks for knowledge sharing that improves smart and open governance practices for citizens across Canada and the world.
We work through multi-stakeholder partnerships to offer solutions to smart city challenges as a firmly embedded member of the open data community. Operationalizing our Guide to Open Smart Cities, we have assembled a multi-disciplinary one-to-one advisory service to build capacity in local communities of all sizes on issues of data, technology, and governance through a lens of access, interoperability, and engagement.
We bridge geographic and cultural divides by mobilizing and synthesizing knowledge to create practical outcomes for problems institutions and communities face in facilitating data collection, bridging organisational silos, and structuring multi-stakeholder data collaboration - we call this applied research. We implement this approach via the Applied Research Lab, which uses quantitative and qualitative methods to further data strategy, governance, interoperability, and data-based engagement. We draw upon our extensive research partnerships on issues including AI ethics and digital transformation.
We partner with international organizations to make our local experience and expertise relevant to others and bring back knowledge to our community. Our scaling up of local work is achieved through support from the Applied Research Lab in tailoring capacity building programs for local and national stakeholders undergoing organizational change. In so doing, we actively contribute to international peer-to-peer knowledge networks.
Our dynamic team is comprised of people with experience in all sectors, with specialized expertise in government, strategic and operational planning, access to information, information technology, private sector, data standards creation, applied research international development, policy development, and software development.