Open Knowledge International

Enable feedback channels for improving the quality of existing government data


The problem

It is important for data released to be accurate. However, even when significant time and resources are invested toward enhancing accuracy, mistakes may still happen, especially when working with a large dataset. By providing feedback mechanisms through which stakeholders can report and correct errors, inconsistencies and incompleteness in already published data, the public sector body can increase the quality of the data while distributing the cost of publication.

The solution

Open Addresses, Denmark: This initiative, facilitated by the Government of Denmark, allows public to edit their addresses. It has been showcased as an open data best practice by several research studies, including the Open Data Impact case studies conducted by the GovLab.

Utilize existing feedback channels: By publishing data on github, users can request to update or make changes to the data to enhance the quality. They can also submit requests for specific datasets. Finally, seeing who forks the data also provides better understanding of who is using data and how. Examples provided in Share-PSI best practice, but the U.S. government also published Project Open Data for comment on github.

Engage with stakeholders and data users: This best practice is closely tied to making sure the members of the public interested in the data know channels for improving data quality exist. Direct engagement with civil society, such as the School of Data or the Open Knowledge Network is recommended.

CKAN Features: CKAN, an open source data portal platform developed by Open Knowledge Labs, includes features that allows users to engage and comment on the data, with the ultimate aim of increasing data quality and release of data that aligns with user needs.

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