Make things open: it makes things better

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Submitted By
Mike Gifford
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Votes: 14


Emulate the Government Digital Service's Design Principles, especially the last point:

"We should share what we’re doing whenever we can. With colleagues, with users, with the world. Share code, share designs, share ideas, share intentions, share failures. The more eyes there are on a service the better it gets — howlers are spotted, better alternatives are pointed out, the bar is raised. Much of what we’re doing is only possible because of open source code and the generosity of the web design community. We should pay that back."

https://www.gov.uk/design-principles#tenth

Fits in nicely with the USA's model too https://playbook.cio.gov/#play13

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Comments

Submitted by Charles Jaimet on November 23, 2016 - 4:45 PM

Agreed. All development begins with discovery and should include thoughtful user story mapping. Adding efficiency can free up funds and prioritized opening of data can spark innovation. Every time I go to a hackathon or civically-minded event, the key obstacle is access to useful, reliable data. Many people want to do good with the limited free time at their disposal, but gathering and curating the data required just to get started is very often a show stopper and their contribution potential goes untapped.

Submitted by Mike Gifford on May 16, 2016 - 10:20 AM

Thanks Bruce. Clearly making things open has a cost. Decisions will need to be made about what is practical. However, if governments start with a "Share first" approach when beginning new projects then the costs will be reduced. Furthermore, how many datasets within government are already duplicated because of existing silos?

Submitted by Bruce Cuthbert on May 13, 2016 - 8:02 AM

There is a balance between making data open and the cost of making data available. Do not design to have all data open. Logically clarify what data needs to be open based on priorities.

Submitted by Sean Boots on May 12, 2016 - 5:03 PM

This is excellent, and would be such a valuable change – both to empower federal-level public services, as well as provincial and municipal public services that could benefit from shared open source tools and resources.