G8 Commitment to Open Data

Louise Simmons | Dave Cartwright | John Dunn | TechWorld | June 19, 2013

The news that G8 leaders have signed an Open Data Charter, pledging to “establish an expectation that all government data be published openly by default,” will be music to the ears of many entrepreneurs.

At the G8 summit in Northern Ireland yesterday, it was announced that data will be released in 14 areas, including education, transport, health, and crime and justice. As well as letting citizens hold government to account, the initiative will also help support innovation and drive economic growth, according to the Cabinet Office.

While the value of open data to businesses may not seem immediately obvious, many of the most successful web and mobile applications today are powered by government data. Prime Minister David Cameron acknowledged this fact at the G8 Innovation conference in London last week: