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2015 Open Data Index

The Open Knowledge Foundation just published the 2015 edition of its Open Data Index. The Index "provides the most comprehensive snapshot available of the global state of open data".

The Index is elaborated from crowdsourced information, as volunteers submit datasets for each country which are then reviewed. Each country is evaluated on the release of 14 different key datasets.

(Note: The Index assesses government's openness in publication of their datasets. It "does not look at the broader societal context — for example the legal or policy framework, (FOI, etc.) — and it also does not seek to assess use or impact in a systematic way. Lastly, it does not assess the quality of the data."

Each of these datasets is then assigned a score from 0 to 100, in terms of a series of parameters:

  • Does this dataset exist in the country (5 points)?
  • Is it public (5 points)?
  • Is it in digital format (5 points), available online (5 points) in bulk downloads (10 points)?
  • Is the data free (15 points) and timely updated (10 points)?
  • Is it machine readable (15 points) and released under an open license (30 points)?

In this resource, we've imported the Index's 2013 - 2015 data into Silk, to explore and create interactive visualizations you can share and embed. At the bottom of the page, you will find also an interactive table to easily search and access all the datasets reviewed, and links to auto-generated country profiles for each of the 122 countries evaluated.

Score of Assessed Datasets per Country, Filtered for Americas

Note: One value has to be selected in the "Dataset Type" filter for the chart to make sense

Taiwan ranks first as most open data-friendly country. UK, Denmark and Colombia follow

With 78 points (out of an ideal 100), Taiwan wins the medal of most open country, jumping 10 positions ahead from 2014 and 35 since 2013. The US rank 8th, together with the Netherlands.

None of the top 15 countries is in Middle East/North Africa. The "most open" country in the region, Oman, comes only at 66th place (out of 122).

Top 15 Countries

UK, Germany and Nigeria lost most points in comparison to last year's evaluation.

The UK, second most open country in the ranking, actually scored 21 points less than last year. That's the highest drop in the list, followed by Germany and Nigeria that lost 20 points. This doesn't necessarily mean that the countries ranked much lower, for example the UK lost only one position. Most countries actually saw a poorer score this year than in the previous: 55 of the 80 that have been assessed both in 2015 and in 2014 scored lower this year. This almost 70% of them.

Difference in Score 2015 vs. 2014 of Countries datacards

Interactive: Find the Least and Most Open Datasets for Your Country

Adjust the filters in the following chart to find which datasets score best and worse in your country.

Score of Datasets

The Biggest Obstacles to Publishing Open Data: Machine-Readability and Open Licenses

More than half of the 1,586 datasets assessed this year are public and are available online, which shows government's intention to openness, to some extent.

Only a few datasets however manage to pass other important openness thresholds: being published in a machine-readable format and under an open license. In fact, only 24% of the 2015 datasets are machine-readable and only 12% are released with an open license.

More than half of the datasets assessed worldwide are online 

Less than a quarter of the datasets assessed worldwide are machine-readable

Only 12% of the datasets assessed worldwide are under an open license

Extrapolating Data from PDFs is Terribly Complicated. Yet They're the #3 Favorite Format to Publish Government Data

You need a series of tools, skills and time to be able to extrapolate data from a PDF. Yet, 106 key datasets are published in this format.

Number of Datasets Published in Each Format

Note: format information is not available for all datasets!

What are the Least Open Datasets? Probably those on Government Spending, Land Ownership and Water Quality

Only 3 countries out of 122 had a dataset on government spending that scored at least 70/100 in openess: Greece, UK and Brazil. This makes government spending the hardest dataset to access as open data, despite its key importance for citizens and journalists who want to monitor their governments. Interestingly, countries have much less trouble publishing government budget data, which is the second most open data category after national statistics.

Land ownership is also hard to get public and open information on. Here, only Denmark, Uruguay, Georgia and Jamaica succeed to achieve a 70/100 or higher.

Number of 2015 Datasets with a score over 70/100

For reference: There are 122 assessed datasets (one for each country) in each category.

Datasets with a score over 70/100, filtered for Government Spending Datasets

Datasets with a score over 70/100, filtered for Land Ownership Datasets

The Most Active Submitters of the Community: Mor Rubinstein, Bruce Hoo Fung and Tryggvi Björgvinsson

Number of Datasets Submitted by Each Submitter

Number of Datasets Submitted by Each Submitter

Number of Datasets Reviewed by Each Reviewer

Interactive: Find Links to the Datasets You Can/Can't Access in Your Country

Adjust the filters in the following chart to find which datasets score best and worse in your country. Consider lobbying for closed and unexisting key datasets in your country!

Interactive Table of all Datasets Assessed

Interactive: Explore Reports by Country

Countries datacards

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