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OpenStat Madagascar : First Open Data Platform by Civil Society in Madagascar

 

Two weeks before the 5th Open Government Summit is to be held in Tbilissi – Georgia next July 2018,  Open Data has taken another step in Madagascar.  OpenStat Madagascar was launched by Madagascar Initiatives for Digital Innovation association (MAIDI) during a launch event last Saturday 30 June 2018 with the support of Mozilla and Albert Sloan Foundation. This is therefore the first Open Data platform by Civil Society for the country. In parallel with this, a data reuse competition was initited by MAIDI aiming for a national impact. Anyone above 18 years old but mostly national journalists are encouraged to apply.

 

High quality data for Malagasy people

 Rather than running after a large amount of data published, Openstat Madagascar is primarily intended to provide permanent high quality data with the most detailed metadata for a better understanding to the public. Monthly updates will also be done by MAIDI for each data collected by the association.  The second objective is to build a Government – Civil Society partnership in Data publication in a reusable format. « Madagascar has not that much data available online but still,  the few we have are in HTML or PDF format … this has massively reduced Madagascar Open Data Barometer score during the national assessment we did in May 2018 » said Misa RAKOTONDRAINA, MAIDI’s Vice President.

 

Data Reuse Competition for all

 To show the value of data, a data reuse competition is currently open to journalists, students and anyone passionate about data analysis. Until 6 August 2018 midnight, participants can submit two (2) either article, mobile application, storytelling taking the form of infography or short animated videos. The objective is to transform these data into action through discovering meanignful information behind Open Data. Representatives Open Data advocates, datajournalist and experts from CFI Medias, Open Burkina and MAIDI will constitute the Jury.

 

Toward a Malagasy Open Government

Two years after the OGP Summit in 2016 in Paris, it’s unfortunate to see Madagascar inactive on the eve of the coming OGP in Tbilissi from 17 to 19 July 2018. While Open Data is just a small part of an Open Government,  it’s an essential tool for fighting corruption, advancing in E-governance and improving Information access. All three are still at a lower level for Madagascar.  It’s always alleged by Governmental entities that the absence of a National Open Data Charter is a barrier of making Open Data a reality, however existing data are just one step away from being totally open : transforming what is already there into a reusable format … just one decision to make.

Published on Monday, 02 July 2018 14:03
Written by F. RAFIDIHARINIRINA
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TECHNOLOGY
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