HRI participated in the EU Open Data Days 2021

The first-ever EU Open Data Days event took place online in November 2021. Three days of webinar programme comprised of public sector open data and data visualization as well as EU Datathon, the open data competition for developers. Helsinki Region Infoshare team participated in the EU Open Data Days and Minna Joensuu, a member of HRI’s steering group, presented our best practices.

EU Open Data days 2021 Programme
Minna Joensuu’s (HRI) presentation:

  • Slides
  • Recording
  • Joensuu’s presentation, titled ‘Best practices of 10 years of open data in the Helsinki region’, introduced three most valuable lessons from our perspective. First, co-operation is the key: in a relatively small area such as the Helsinki region, the cities can accomplish more by working together. Furthermore, common databases (such as regional statistics) and regional authorities that collect data from the whole region make interoperability easier.

    A good example of interoperable data sharing is the Service Map of Helsinki Region. The data presented in the map is maintained and harmonized by the same provider. In addition, the Service Map itself uses the open API which makes it easy to notice errors. This leads to higher quality data.

    Open data ecosystems and developer communities are often mentioned in open data strategies, but in our view, it’s important to remember that building a community does not happen overnight. We have worked persistently for ten years and arranged meetings and discussions and worked with universities, for instance. What used to be a tight community of open data forerunners is now a looser network of everyday data users.

    Even though we have come far with open data in the Helsinki region, there is still work to do. We have plenty of open data, but it could be more interoperable and updates could be automated.