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Open Data Now: How Open Data is Changing Government, Business, and Society

Date & Time:
16:00:00 - 17:00:00,
Tuesday 13 May, 2014


Open Data – accessible, public data in readily usable formats – has become a global force for change. In this talk, Joel Gurin, author of the new book Open Data Now and director of the Open Data 500 study, will describe how this growing resource is having an impact on government, business and society. He will also describe how it relates to Big Data, concerns about personal data and privacy, and other trends impacting the Internet today.

The talk will cover the findings of the Open Data 500 study, a project of the GovLab at New York University, which is the first comprehensive study of the use of Open Data by new and established businesses. Open government data on healthcare, finance, education, energy, and many other areas has become a business resource around the world. The 500 businesses in this ongoing study show the wide variety of companies, ranging from two-person startups to billion-dollar enterprises, that are using Open Data successfully. While the current study has focused on the U.S., the GovLab plans to replicate it in the UK and in other countries as well.

Open Data has also created new opportunities for government to engage with the public, new approaches to the release of personal data, and new expectations of openness and transparency for businesses and government alike. This talk will touch on these aspects of Open Data and its impact as well.

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  • Name: Joel Gurin
  • Affiliation: Governance Lab, New York University
  • Role:
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  • Bio: Joel Gurin is a leading expert on consumer issues, information policy, and the application of open data. He is currently Senior Advisor at the Governance Lab at New York University, a center dedicated to improving government through technology. There he directs the Open Data 500, the first comprehensive study of U.S.-based companies that use open government data as a key business resource ( He is the author of the new book, Open Data Now, and covers the field through his website, Gurin served as Chair of the White House Task Force on Smart Disclosure, which studied how the federal government can help consumers by providing information on complex choices in the marketplace. From late 2009 through early 2012 he was Chief of the Consumer and Governmental Affairs Bureau of the Federal Communications Commission. He was previously Editorial Director and then Executive Vice President of Consumer Reports, where he launched, the world’s largest paid-subscription information-based website.