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Professor Shadbolt Reveals Plans For Open Data Institute

Professor Nigel Shadbolt has been talking about the plans for the government's Open Data Institute (ODI), the centre which aims to promote the coalition's open data policy to the benefit of businesses.

The £10 million project is being headed up by Shadbolt and Tim Berners-Lee, with the idea being to incubate and nurture new businesses making use of the government's open data, driving the country's economic growth forward as a result.

Shadbolt told "Open data is not just about transparency and accountability; there is potential for economic innovation and value to come from it."

While the ODI is being launched with government funding, going forward it will obtain private investment from companies which will become members in return for the cash. However, it will not be focused on turning a profit (being a private company limited by guarantee).

In terms of the nuts and bolts, the ODI will provide incubation for business startups, for four companies per year initially, stepping up to a dozen after a few years. The organisation will also provide training and advice on how best to make use of open data, for well-established enterprises as well as fledgling businesses.

Shadbolt noted: "We will go through mature companies' data assets and identify which ones could be made open or supplemented with other open data."

Major events, such as several week long "appathons" or "hackathons" focusing on open data and related issues will also be organised by the Institute.

The ODI will open its doors come September.

Source: Wired