(Above) The home page of the Sarawak Open Data platform, which can be accessed at https://data.sarawak.gov.my/.
At the recent International Digital Economy Conference Sarawak (IDECS) 2018, Chief Minister Datuk Patinggi Abang Johari Tun Openg launched the Sarawak Open Data platform.
It was designed to give people access to open government datasets for research, application development, and other purposes.
Sarawak’s Open Government Data platform will now be a part of the hundreds of open data initiatives available around the world.
They are usually developed at different levels, from country-level open data such as Australia, India, and Malaysia, to cities like Buenos Aires, London, and Vancouver, and even individual agencies or sectors such as government agencies in the United States.
Open data is meant to be used, reused, and shared with anyone without restrictions, and while its concept isn’t new, it has become more defined and important in stimulating a country’s economy through digital advancement.
Numerous studies have highlighted the values of open data; for instance, improving efficiency and effectiveness of public services, and building better relations between the government and citizens through transparency, accountability, and engagement.
Here are some other benefits from leveraging on this largely untapped resource:
Makes research less tedious
Finding information through an open data is more convenient because it can be accessed from a single platform at any time, making it easier for academics, the public sector, industries, and students to gather necessary facts and figures during their research.
As the data gets updated, analysing their trends and changes also becomes less cumbersome since both old and new information can be found in one location.
Reusing and combining information from different datasets in the open data can lead to greater potential in the development of new products, services, and applications, or improvement of existing ones.
In fact, open data has been a means to encourage innovation through the promotion of its usage as seen from the likes of competitions, hackathons, and datathons.
Whether in fulfilling unmet needs or solving problems that can uplift community wellbeing, aspiring entrepreneurs that are in need of information can use the open data to further understand their potential target market.
Entrepreneurs and general users can also provide feedback to data providers regarding the data they are using or data they hope to see in the future, thereby increasing the demand for more enhanced open data.
Creates new jobs
As the digital economy progresses, the need for more open data professionals will increase as a result of jobs created from more open data initiatives or data-driven organisations.
Sarawak, in particular, hopes to develop data-driven technologies that can enhance major sectors such as agriculture and manufacturing in order to spur the state’s overall economic growth.
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This article first appeared on The Borneo Post, visit this link: http://bit.ly/2LfuyKZby