Report: NYC Open Data Law Progress and Challenges

The NYC Transparency Working Group strongly supports the NYC Open Data Law and believes it has, overall, been a big success. The broad intent of the law is being realized, and it is achieving its goal of pushing City Hall and agencies to make much more data available. Our groups very strongly believe that the DOITT and City Hall staff time needed to implement the Open Data Law should continue to be fully funded.

Prior to the Open Data Law, there was no mandate for city agencies to proactively share their data with the public. The creation of that data sharing mandate has led to the release of hundreds of new data sets, including the PLUTO and ACRIS data sets which have long been sought by planners and academic researchers working on affordable housing and transportation issues.

Additionally, our groups appreciate the power of the API (Application Programming Interface) features on the city’s data portal, which essentially streams data to public users, and powers countless mobile apps. The potential of this feature to link data to users in other agencies, levels of government, and the public is barely being realized. However, it is being recognized. The Open Data Law is widely considered a global best practice, and has drawn government officials from Tokyo, Berlin and the United Kingdom to visit, and speak with the New Yorkers who helped create it.

Read the full report: NYC Open Data Law Progress and Challenges.