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Green light for the Belgian federal Open Data strategy

- July 24, 2015 in Featured, General, Open Data, open-government, strategy

When we first read the results of the 2014 Open Data Index, we said we had big expectations for 2015. We couldn’t be more right: today, the federal ministerial council has, by recommendation of Minister De Croo and Secretary of State Francken, approved an ambitious federal open data strategy. Open by default: an important step to embed Belgium into the digital global ecosystem.
The highlights of what has been decided:
  • State owned companies are included: the same strategy applies to e.g., Proximus, bpost or the Belgian railway company SNCB/NMBS.
  • “Comply or explain”: all datasets and finalised documents have to be opened up by default. When something is kept private or is available under a non-open license, the data owner is obliged to provide an explanation.
  • The default license is CC0 or licenses with no restrictions. This license has proven in the past to be the best open data license. More information on using CC0 for open data here.
  • Data should be provided in a machine-readable fashion. This is great news for app developers, yet it’s even more exciting for developers of machines that automatically discover datasets and are able to reuse datasets without human intervention.
  • All government services will have to appoint an open data champion, which is the contact point for the datasets within that organisation.
Open Knowledge Belgium, the board and its community members, are unanimous: we couldn’t be more excited. The strategy gives us the needed policy guidelines to build further on a more open Belgium.
Filed Away” by Mark Crossfield is licensed under CC BY-SA 2.0

Green light for the Belgian federal Open Data strategy

- July 24, 2015 in Featured, General, Open Data, open-government, strategy

When we first read the results of the 2014 Open Data Index, we said we had big expectations for 2015. We couldn’t be more right: today, the federal ministerial council has, by recommendation of Minister De Croo and Secretary of State Francken, approved an ambitious federal open data strategy. Open by default: an important step to embed Belgium into the digital global ecosystem. The highlights of what has been decided:
  • State owned companies are included: the same strategy applies to e.g., Proximus, bpost or the Belgian railway company SNCB/NMBS.
  • “Comply or explain”: all datasets and finalised documents have to be opened up by default. When something is kept private or is available under a non-open license, the data owner is obliged to provide an explanation.
  • The default license is CC0 or licenses with no restrictions. This license has proven in the past to be the best open data license. More information on using CC0 for open data here.
  • Data should be provided in a machine-readable fashion. This is great news for app developers, yet it’s even more exciting for developers of machines that automatically discover datasets and are able to reuse datasets without human intervention.
  • All government services will have to appoint an open data champion, which is the contact point for the datasets within that organisation.
Open Knowledge Belgium, the board and its community members, are unanimous: we couldn’t be more excited. The strategy gives us the needed policy guidelines to build further on a more open Belgium.
Filed Away” by Mark Crossfield is licensed under CC BY-SA 2.0

Green light for the Belgian federal Open Data strategy

- July 24, 2015 in Featured, General

When we first read the results of the 2014 Open Data Index, we said we had big expectations for 2015. We couldn’t be more right: today, the federal ministerial council has, by recommendation of Minister De Croo and Secretary of State Francken, approved an ambitious federal open data strategy. Open by default: an important step to embed Belgium into the digital global ecosystem. The highlights of what has been decided:
  • State owned companies are included: the same strategy applies to e.g., Proximus, bpost or the Belgian railway company SNCB/NMBS.
  • “Comply or explain”: all datasets and finalised documents have to be opened up by default. When something is kept private or is available under a non-open license, the data owner is obliged to provide an explanation.
  • The default license is CC0 or licenses with no restrictions. This license has proven in the past to be the best open data license. More information on using CC0 for open data here.
  • Data should be provided in a machine-readable fashion. This is great news for app developers, yet it’s even more exciting for developers of machines that automatically discover datasets and are able to reuse datasets without human intervention.
  • All government services will have to appoint an open data champion, which is the contact point for the datasets within that organisation.
Open Knowledge Belgium, the board and its community members, are unanimous: we couldn’t be more excited. The strategy gives us the needed policy guidelines to build further on a more open Belgium.

Green light for the Belgian federal Open Data strategy

- July 24, 2015 in Featured, General, Open Data, open-government, strategy

When we first read the results of the 2014 Open Data Index, we said we had big expectations for 2015. We couldn’t be more right: today, the federal ministerial council has, by recommendation of Minister De Croo and Secretary of State Francken, approved an ambitious federal open data strategy. Open by default: an important step to embed Belgium into the digital global ecosystem.
The highlights of what has been decided:
  • State owned companies are included: the same strategy applies to e.g., Proximus, bpost or the Belgian railway company SNCB/NMBS.
  • “Comply or explain”: all datasets and finalised documents have to be opened up by default. When something is kept private or is available under a non-open license, the data owner is obliged to provide an explanation.
  • The default license is CC0 or licenses with no restrictions. This license has proven in the past to be the best open data license. More information on using CC0 for open data here.
  • Data should be provided in a machine-readable fashion. This is great news for app developers, yet it’s even more exciting for developers of machines that automatically discover datasets and are able to reuse datasets without human intervention.
  • All government services will have to appoint an open data champion, which is the contact point for the datasets within that organisation.
Open Knowledge Belgium, the board and its community members, are unanimous: we couldn’t be more excited. The strategy gives us the needed policy guidelines to build further on a more open Belgium.
Filed Away” by Mark Crossfield is licensed under CC BY-SA 2.0

Open & Agile Smart Cities meeting

- June 24, 2015 in Events

I’ve presented Open Knowledge Belgium at the Open & Agile Smart Cities meeting in Brussels today. The meeting was more focus on Open Data than other kinds of Open. Here are the slides: If you give a presentation on Open Knowledge Belgium yourself, feel free to reuse the slides. Pieter

Open & Agile Smart Cities meeting

- June 24, 2015 in Events

I’ve presented Open Knowledge Belgium at the Open & Agile Smart Cities meeting in Brussels today. The meeting was more focus on Open Data than other kinds of Open. Here are the slides: If you give a presentation on Open Knowledge Belgium yourself, feel free to reuse the slides. Pieter

The PSI law ready before the summer

- April 22, 2015 in Uncategorized

At our conference Open Belgium 2015, the cabinet of Theo Francken (administrative simplification) and the cabinet of Alexander De Croo (digital agenda) announced that they’re going to work together to implement the European PSI directive, and where necessary, even go further than what Europe tells us to do. Today, we got the great news that NMBS/SNCB is not going to be an exception to the new implementation of the PSI Directive in Belgium. The minister of the Digital Agenda is urging NMBS/SNCB to open up their data in his press release. Screenshot from 2015-04-23 09:46:25     PSI stands for Public Sector Information. It’s a European directive (which means that member countries have to implement it, otherwise there will be a sanction) that obliges Public Sector Bodies to open up policy documents and data under an open license. Of course there is a list of exceptions (the most obvious one being privacy sensitive data). Read the PSI Directive: http://ec.europa.eu/digital-agenda/en/european-legislation-reuse-public-sector-information This is great news for open transport data in Belgium, which supporters are probably opening up some bottles of champagne at this moment.

The PSI law ready before the summer

- April 22, 2015 in Uncategorized

At our conference Open Belgium 2015, Theo Francken and Alexander De Croo announced that they’re going to work together to implement the European PSI directive, and where necessary, even go further than what Europe tells us to do. Today, we got the great news that NMBS/SNCB is not going to be an exception to the PSI law in Belgium any longer. The Belgian railway company just recently decided to stop supporting RailTime. An app which was perceived as being better than the official NMBS/SNCB app PSI stands for Public Sector Information. It’s a European directive (which means that member countries have to implement it, otherwise there will be a sanction) that obliges Public Sector Bodies to open up policy documents and data under an open license. Of course there is a list of exceptions (the most obvious one being privacy sensitive data). Read the PSI Directive: http://ec.europa.eu/digital-agenda/en/european-legislation-reuse-public-sector-information The news was officialy announced by Alexander De Croo over here http://decroo.belgium.be/nl/dienstregeling-nmbs-moet-beschikbaar-worden-als-open-data This is great news for open transport data in Belgium.

Want to become part of the board of directors?

- December 7, 2014 in Events, General

In February 2015, Open Knowledge Belgium will celebrate its third anniversary during the Open Belgium conference (http://2015.openbelgium.be). This is also the time that the official functions within the board of directors have been doing their work for 3 years now. We will be open to accept new people in the board of directors of the vzw/asbl. More information about what you can apply for and how this election will work, can be found on the “Board of directors 2015-2018 application form“. Time frame:
  • apply until the end of December
  • voting will happen during January
  • 23d of February during the Open Belgium conference: the start of the new board
The board of directors at Open Knowledge Belgium consists out of: a president, a vice-president, a chief communication officer, a chief finances and all working group coordinators (which are elected through the working groups and not through this form). The 4 functions are voluntary (non-paid but much appreciated) positions. The goal of these 4 of the positions are to make the existence of the working groups as easy as possible. The current “staff” of Open Knowledge Belgium can be found on the staff page. A quick state of the vzw/asbl is summarized in these slides: Being a board member at Open Knowledge Belgium implies holding a conference call each 3 to 4 months to hold a board meeting where financials and administration are discussed (funding, expenses, possible projects within working groups, etc.), and to reply in a timely fashion on the mailinglist of the board (currently ~5 mails/month) to give your input on on-going discussions.  
CC-BY 2.0 OKFN on Flickr

Want to become part of the board of directors?

- December 7, 2014 in Events, General

In February 2015, Open Knowledge Belgium will celebrate its third anniversary during the Open Belgium conference (http://2015.openbelgium.be). This is also the time that the official functions within the board of directors have been doing their work for 3 years now. We will be open to accept new people in the board of directors of the vzw/asbl. More information about what you can apply for and how this election will work, can be found on the “Board of directors 2015-2018 application form“. Time frame:
  • apply until the end of December
  • voting will happen during January
  • 23d of February during the Open Belgium conference: the start of the new board
The board of directors at Open Knowledge Belgium consists out of: a president, a vice-president, a chief communication officer, a chief finances and all working group coordinators (which are elected through the working groups and not through this form). The 4 functions are voluntary (non-paid but much appreciated) positions. The goal of these 4 of the positions are to make the existence of the working groups as easy as possible. The current “staff” of Open Knowledge Belgium can be found on the staff page. A quick state of the vzw/asbl is summarized in these slides: Being a board member at Open Knowledge Belgium implies holding a conference call each 3 to 4 months to hold a board meeting where financials and administration are discussed (funding, expenses, possible projects within working groups, etc.), and to reply in a timely fashion on the mailinglist of the board (currently ~5 mails/month) to give your input on on-going discussions.