Berlin is the first German state to launch an open government data platform

Every month in 2011, another city, state or country launched a new open government data platform. From Open Kenya to British Columbia, transparency has gone global.

Open data wordle

Today in Germany, Berlin has stood up Daten.berlin.de on the Internet.

According to German entrepreneur Anke Domscheit-Berg Berlin is the first German state to have an open data platform.

Heise has a story of Berlin’s new open data portal.

If, like me,  your German isn’t so good, try reading it using Google Translate.

Key points:

  • Ulrich Freise, Berlin’s Secretary of State for Home Affairs, described Berlin’s open data site as base for administrative action that citizens could use to make decisions, find facts and involve themselves in decision-making processes.
  • Domscheit-Berg, a member of the Berlin Open Data Platform for Action, praised the launch as an important milestone on the way to a more transparent government in Germany.
  • An “Open Data Day” in Berlin this May helped introduce more government staff to the idea and resulted in a agenda that subsequently helped shape the release.
  • Much of the data is not machine-readable, at present, nor released under a Creative Commons license that would free to be used commercially or otherwise adapted for further civic use, as German civic developer Stefan Wehr Meyer pointed out to Heise.

While Open Data Berlin launches with just 18 data sets, there’s plenty of room to grow. Data.gov, in the US, went online with 49 data sets in 2009. Now there are over 400,000 listed there. If Berlin can similarly expand and open up more meaningful data in a manner that’s usable to Germany’s civic developers, there will be more Deutchland data stories to tell this year.

About Alex Howard

Alexander B. Howard is a DC-based a technology writer and editor. Previously, he was the Washington Correspondent at O'Reilly Media, where he covered the voices, technologies and issues that matter in the intersection of government, technology and society. If you're feeling social, you can follow him on Twitter, like him on Facebook or circle him on Google Plus In addition to corresponding for the O’Reilly Radar, he has contributed to the Huffington Post, Govfresh, Mashable, ReadWriteWeb, National Journal, The Atlantic, CBS News and Forbes. He graduated from Colby College with a bachelor's degree in biology and sociology. Currently, he is a resident of the District of Columbia, where he lives with his greyhound, wife, power tools, plants and growing collection of cast iron pans, many of which are frequently used to pursue his passion for good cooking.

2 thoughts on “Berlin is the first German state to launch an open government data platform

  1. WE are putting together a program for ALL governments – WE THE PEOPLE appeals to 100% of the people. WE finally have the democrats and republicans agreeing on something!  It’s not cool to not be 100% and we will always move forward.

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