Feel honored, glad and surprised to notice that the world’s largest and most significant open data portal data.europa.eu, whose strategic objective is to promote access to open data band to increase their global value, have published news article devoted to my scientific article “Timeliness of Open Data in Open Government Data Portals Through Pandemic-Related Data: a long-distance data from the publisher to the user“.
“Timeliness” of open data is one of the primary principles of open data considered a success factor for the open data, but at the same time it is one of the biggest barriers that can disrupt user confidence in the data and even the desire to use the entire open data portal. However, assessing this aspect is a very complex task which, in most cases, makes it impossible for users of open data. Therefore, there are few studies on the timeliness of open data, and even fewer comparative studies on the timeliness of data available from open data portals from different countries. Unfortunately, 2020 gave it a chance to figure it out. It became easy enough to establish the length of the data path from the data holder to the OGD portal by analysing the timeliness of the data sets associated with Covid-19 in relation to the first case observed in the country.
In this article 60 countries and their OGD portals are explored, answering questions such as: Are available COVID-19-related open data on the OGD portal? How quickly have they been published compared to the first case of disease identified in the given country, i.e. are open data correspondent with the real-world in terms of their timeliness? Are they updated regularly? Are they available in machine-readable format? Has the current situation affected other pre-published datasets? These and some other issues, which are closely linked to the relevance of data to the “open data” principles and how and to what extent they are able to impact society and the national economy, are answered, allowing for understanding how quickly OGD portals respond to emergencies by opening and updating data for their future potential re-use, which is essential in the digital data world.
The questions defined and answered are considered to be of great importance in the open data world, allowing critical aspects to be addressed by many countries together and individually, starting with the development of open data initiatives, continuing with the introduction of practical changes at both open data culture and technology levels. Comparative analyses of the national initiative allow, in turn, a clearer insight into what would be the countries whose experience should be taken into account by improving identified weaker aspects on the way to the open world, including promoting open science.
Data.europa.eu portal provides access to open data from around the world, i.e. from national, EU, European, regional and international portals, creating the largest open data access point. In 2021, data.europa.eu has replaced two of the largest portals to date, EU Open Data Portal and European Data Portal, joining them in one major and stronger project led by the world’s most prominent researchers and practitioners in the field of open data.
The article was presented at an international conference Fourth International Conference on Multimedia Computing, Networking and Applications (MCNA) 2020 at the end of 2020.