Re-Use of Public Sector information – is it a good idea?

Why should public bodies spend time and resource on publishing data open source and potentially developing schemas or standard processes for such publishing  when there is nothing in it for them?


Some might argue that as soon as the data is published, if there is a re-use for it and/or there is potential commercial value in the information, someone will want to make a proprietary claim to it.


Therefore,  if the information is really of interest to a commercial organisation, they will invest the time/resource into making sense of what is put out there, so public bodies don’t have to?


That is one way of looking at it.


Could it not also be argued, that this is exactly what was intended. Public data should be released for re-use so as to encourage entrepreneurship, innovation and clever uses of that data in ways that we perhaps could not have foreseen or envisaged. That way, information that is freely available can help boost business and encourage growth?


These are just two viewpoints on whether or not making public data available open source is a good idea, I am sure there are lots more arguments for and against – what do you think?



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