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Identifying recommended standards and best practices for open data

Authors: Stéphane Guidoin (OpenNorth), Paulina Marczak (OpenNorth), Juan Pane (ILDA), James McKinney (OpenNorth)
Funded by Open Data for Development
Spring 2015

This OpenNorth study examines open data standards practices to determine where they produce barriers to accessibility in terms of discovering, accessing and using data. It recommends standards for more global adoption to enable information sharing. The findings were presented at the International Open Data Conference (IODC) in 2015 for which OpenNorth served as the conference reporting anchor for the standards stream.

Gaps and opportunities for standardization in OGP members' open data catalogs

Authors: James McKinney (OpenNorth), Stéphane Guidoin (OpenNorth), Paulina Marczak (OpenNorth)
Funded by Open Data for Development
Winter 2015

OpenNorth co-leads the standards stream of the OGP Open Data Working Group from 2014-2015. In that capacity, Open Data 4 Development funded OpenNorth to investigate reporting and analysis practices of OGP members’ catalogs, study existing processes to identify gaps and opportunities in how standards are applied, and suggest baseline standards and best practices to enhance data’s usability.

Understanding the Data Needs of Settlement Stakeholders to Better Support Newcomers and Refugees

Authored by OpenNorth
Funded by Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship Canada (IRCC)
April 2016

Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship Canada (IRCC) commissioned this study from OpenNorth in 2016, when Canada was facing an influx of Syrian refugees. The report focuses on how IRCC’s open data strategy and infrastructure could better meet the data and information needs of their stakeholders, with key recommendations on data quality, accessibility, and standards. The study is based on a combined qualitative and qualitative data user needs identification methodology developed by OpenNorth.

Data 4 Impact Report 2016

Prepared by OpenNorth, Data for Good, New Brunswick Social Policy Research Network
August 2016

Reporting from the 1st annual Data 4 Impact workshop held in Saint John (NB) in the lead-up to the Canadian Open Data Summit 2016. The event brought together more than 60 regional and local not-for-profit organizations to raise awareness about the value of data sharing within the sector, provide frameworks and techniques to facilitate the use of data, and share use cases of community data collaboratives. The workshop was co-organized and facilitated in collaboration with Data4Good and the New Brunswick Social Policy Research Networks' (NBSPRN).

How can we improve urban resilience with open data?

Authors: Jean-Noé Landry (OpenNorth), Keira Webster (OpenNorth, Geothink.ca), Bianca Wylie (OpenNorth), Pamela Robinson MCIP RPP (Urban Planning Ryerson University, Geothink.ca Researcher)
Funded by Open Data for Development
December 2016

Urban resilience is focused around issues that are constantly changing and evolving, such as migration patterns, employment trends, industrial development and climate change. Launched at the OGP’s annual conference in Paris in 2016, OpenNorth’s discussion paper on the value added by open data in addressing urban resilience is based on the input of 35 global south and north experts. The discussion paper informs OpenNorth’s contribution in developing the United Nations Office for Disaster Risk Reduction (UNISDR)’s Making Cities Resilient Campaign toolkit.

Aligning Canadian Open Data Programs with International Best Practices

Authors: Erin Bryson (OpenNorth, Geothink.ca), Jean-Noé Landry (OpenNorth), Prof Peter Johnson (University of Waterloo)
Funded by Geothink.ca
January 2017

The international Open Data Charter (ODC) is a set of 6 principles that provide governments with a common foundation upon which to realise the full potential of open data. As Steward of the ODC, OpenNorth interviewed 10 cities and 4 provinces in Canada to discuss how the ODC could align with sub-national open data policies and programs. The report is a collaboration with Geothink.ca. The City of Edmonton was Canada’s first city to subsequently adopt the ODC and OpenNorth currently advises the Province of Ontario on the ODC’s implementation.

Understanding the Digital Capacity of Newcomer Settlement Organizations

Authored by OpenNorth
Funded by Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship Canada (IRCC)
April 2017

Conducted in 2017, this follow-up research project conducted for IRCC was designed to gain a deeper understanding of the digital capacity and needs of service provider organizations that serve newcomers in Canada and inform support recommendations for the sector. OpenNorth collects the input of 261 newcomer settlement organizations with a primary data collection tool and presents its findings in a French and English webinar.

Data 4 Impact Report 2017

Prepared by OpenNorth, Powered by Data, Data for Good
August 2017

Reporting from the 2nd annual Data 4 Impact workshop held in Edmonton (AB) in the lead-up to the Canadian Open Data Summit 2017. The event brought together more than 80 regional and local not-for-profit organizations to raise awareness about the value of data sharing within the sector, provide frameworks and techniques to facilitate the use of data, and share use cases of community data collaboratives. The workshop was co-organized and facilitated in collaboration with Data4Good and Powered by Data.

Open Smart Cities in Canada: Situating Canadian Cities in an International Smart City Ecosystem (Webinar 1)

Authors: Rachel Bloom (OpenNorth), Dr Tracey Lauriault (Carleton University), Jean-Noé Landry (OpenNorth)
Funded by Natural Resources Canada
August 2017

As Canadian municipalities trend towards developing and deploying open and smart city strategies and roadmaps, they must increasingly become aware of tools, processes and procedures that produce open and geospatial data and determine the priority data that will become public and contribute to smart city contexts. OpenNorth’s Open Smart Cities in Canada project is funded by Natural Resources Canada (NRCan) and consists of an environmental-scan (E-scan) and gap analysis of smart city definitions, actors, standards, and pathways; a Canadian smart cities assessment report from the project’s four partnering cities (Edmonton, Montreal, Guelph, and Ottawa); an inter-jurisdictional framework based on a case study in the Province of Ontario; a report on international policy mobilities and guidelines for city manager practices surrounding open and geospatial data in a smart city context.

This research is led by OpenNorth and funded by Natural Resources Canada (NRCan) GeoConnections. The core team of experts leading the research for this project include Prof. Tracey Lauriault at Carleton University, M. David Fewer at the Canadian Internet Policy and Public Interest Clinic (CIPPIC), and Prof. Mark S. Fox at the University of Toronto.

Video recording of the webinar presentation available here

Linking legislative openness to open data in Canada

Authors: Paulina Marczak (Queen's University, former OpenNorth research intern), Renée Sieber (McGill University, Geothink Lead)
September 2017

Legislatures are increasingly attuned to the rhetoric of open data for legislative content like bills and Hansards. This rhetoric dictates that government content should be freely accessible, repurposable, machine-readable, standardized across subregions, and available without licensing restrictions. Canada offers an excellent example of renewed emphasis on openness across jurisdictions. The call for legislative openness also derives from open data advocates, who seek to apply the rules of open data to unstructured information. We do not know whether legislative openness in Canada, at the provincial and territorial level, matches the rhetoric of open data. This study focused on commonly occurring categories of information on subnational legislative websites, and examined their copyright, availability, archivability, information timeliness, and plain language descriptions.

Open Smart Cities in Canada: Webinar 2

Authors: Rachel Bloom (OpenNorth), Dr Tracey Lauriault (Carleton University), Jean-Noé Landry (OpenNorth)
Funded by Natural Resources Canada
December 2017

As Canadian municipalities pursue developing and deploying open and smart city strategies and roadmaps it is suggested in this webinar that there are tools, practices, policies and legislation that can inform and assist public officials in decision making about the deployment of open smart cities and also about the processes and procedures that enable the dissemination of data generated in smart city contexts and about the technologies that are used to generate those data. Findings from this webinar are particularly timely due to the recent launch of Infrastructure Canada’s Smart Cities Challenge.

This research is led by OpenNorth and funded by Natural Resources Canada (NRCan) GeoConnections. The core team of experts leading the research for this project include Prof. Tracey Lauriault at Carleton University, M. David Fewer at the Canadian Internet Policy and Public Interest Clinic (CIPPIC), and Prof. Mark S. Fox at the University of Toronto.

Video recording of the webinar presentation available here

Nous avons également présenté ce webinaire en français. Voici l'enregistrement du webinaire avec les diapositives de la présentation.

From Development to Adoption: Lessons from Three Open Standards

Authored by OpenNorth
Funded by Open Data Institute (ODI)
December 2017

Developing and maintaining data standards is difficult, but a necessary step to unlock the potential for open data. To maximise the potential for widespread adoption, new standards initiatives must build upon the success and failure of existing standards. We document our own experiences with Open511, Popolo and Represent to share with the open data community.

Canada in the World: Towards Canadian-Led Open Government

Authored by OpenNorth and Powered by Data
Funded by OpenNorth and Powered by Data
November 2017

In collaboration with Powered by Data, OpenNorth identified the opportunities for Canada to take a leadership role in the global open government movement, and expand the Federal Government's open government policy internationally. We position open government within the arena of foreign policy and as an alternative form of Canadian soft power. Based on the views of 13 Canadian open government experts, the following 6 themes provide guidance for Canada's leadership role as a member of the Open Government Partnership Steering Committee:

  1. Lead by Example
  2. Active and Proactive Participation by Politicians and Civil Servants at all Levels
  3. Clarify the Message
  4. Go Beyond Compliance
  5. Translate Open Government to Other Policy Areas
  6. Reinforce the Relationship with Canadian Civil Society Organisations

Making Cities Open by Default: Lessons from open data pioneers

Authored by OpenNorth and Open Data Charter
Funded by Open Data Charter
February 2018

In collaboration with the Open Data Charter Secretariat, OpenNorth interviewed city managers, local civic leaders, and elected officials from 4 cities in Canada, the Province of Ontario, 3 cities around the world (Buenos Aires, Argentina; Lviv, Ukraine; Durham, NC, USA) to identify adoption barriers, interests, future plans, and support needs.

Open Smart Cities FAQ

Authored by CIPPIC, in collaboration with OpenNorth and Open Smart Cities in Canada team
February 2018

In collaboration with leading researchers, CIPPIC, smart city representatives, as well as provinces with advanced open government programs, Open Smart Cities in Canada project aims to develop municipal data management policies and guidelines that connect open data and government to smart cities programs, ensuring the two support one another.

As part of this project, this FAQ seeks to answer common legal and regulatory questions about Smart City technologies.

Open Smart Cities in Canada: Environmental Scan and Case Studies - Executive Summary

Authors: Tracey P. Lauriault, Rachel Bloom, Carly Livingstone, Jean-Noé Landry
Funded by Natural Resources Canada's GeoConnections Program
Spring 2018

This executive summary consolidates findings from a smart city environmental scan (E-Scan) and five case studies of smart city initiatives in Canada. The E-Scan included examining documents and definitions produced by smart city vendors, think tanks, associations, consulting firms, standards organizations, conferences, civil society organizations, including critical academic literature, government reports, marketing material, specifications and requirements documents. This research was motivated by a desire to identify international shapers of smart cities and to better understand what differentiates a smart city from an Open Smart City.

This report is an output of Open Smart Cities in Canada, a one-year collaborative research project.

Open Smart Cities in Canada: Assessment Report

Authors: Tracey P. Lauriault, Rachel Bloom, Jean-Noé Landry
Funded by Natural Resources Canada's GeoConnections Program
Spring 2018

This assessment report communicates the state of smart city initiatives in four cities in Canada (Edmonton, Guelph, Montréal, and Ottawa) by reporting on how these cities are developing and rolling out their smart city plans. In order to capture the complexity of inter-jurisdictional processes and coordination related to Canadian smart cities, we have provided an additional case study about the governance and management of Ontario’s electricity grid and smart meter data.

This report is an output of Open Smart Cities in Canada, a one-year collaborative research project.

Open Smart Cities Guide V1.0

Authors: Tracey P. Lauriault, Rachel Bloom, Jean-Noé Landry
Funded by Natural Resources Canada's GeoConnections Program
Spring 2018

This guide provides a first ever definition for an Open Smart City and is intended as a starter kit for city stakeholders and decision makers. We expect that this living document will grow as we receive more input and learn about additional people, projects, practices and resources that contribute to Open Smart Cities.

This report is an output of Open Smart Cities in Canada, a one-year collaborative research project.

Open Smart Cities in Canada: Webinar 3

Authors: Tracey P. Lauriault, Rachel Bloom, Jean-Noé Landry
Funded by Natural Resources Canada's GeoConnections Program
Spring 2018

In this webinar we present a first ever definition for an Open Smart City and the Open Smart Cities Guide V1.0, informed by research conducted in Canada and an examination of international best practices. In the context of Canada’s Smart Cities Challenge and the public conversation regarding Sidewalk Labs, this webinar gave us timely opportunity to receive public feedback on the definition and structure of our guide. The webinar refers to tools, practices, policies, recommendations and legal frameworks to guide Canadian municipalities toward co-creating Open Smart Cities with their residents. Watch the webinar here.

This report is an output of Open Smart Cities in Canada, a one-year collaborative research project.

The Hub Model: The Potential for Philanthropic Intervention in Integrated Service Delivery

Acknowledgements
This project was funded by the J.W. McConnell Foundation. In addition to the J.W. McConnell Foundation, we would like to thank the following for their valuable input: Social Innovation Exchange (SIX), Community Safety Knowledge Alliance (CSKA), the Government of Saskatchewan (Ministry of Justice, Community Safety & Wellbeing), the Yorkton Hub, and the Prince Albert Centre of Responsibility.

The Province of Saskatchewan’s Hub model is a strong example of a cross-jurisdictional, cross-sectoral, integrated service delivery model that is changing the way human services are delivered to the public. Through its highly flexible--but privacy-conscious--structure, Hubs in Saskatchewan are bringing together service providers into collaborative settings and building relationships. In this model, service providers collaborate, share data, and address common problems. Our investigation of the Hub is aimed at documenting its functioning and investigating perceptions surrounding it and the potential role of philanthropy.