Open data giving public new eyes on government
The Canadian government's advisory panel on open government is chaired by treasury board president and member of Parliament Tony Clement. Clement launched Canada's open data portal on Tuesday as Prime Minister Stephen Harper announced support for an international open data 'charter of principles' at the G-8 leaders summit in Northern Ireland. The government's continued support of the open data initiative will be wholly necessary if it is to meet its goal of increasing transparency and accountability at the federal level. In an interview with the Daily News, Clement promised that support would be there. 'One of the standards we're setting is that more open data is desirable and necessary,' he said. That said, there are limits, said Clement. Information will be withheld if there are concerns about privacy rights, national security or other 'legitimate' reasons to ward off prying eyes - a small amount of the total, he said. 'Unless there's a really good reason not to supply the data online, we will supply the data online,' he said. 'That's the culture change we're doing now.' Canada has posted some 273,000 data sets online and has plans to add thousands more.
The Canadian open data portal can be accessed through http: // data.gc.ca."