Identifying local needs and opportunities
It is difficult to provide a blueprint for an open data infrastructure for agriculture that applies to any country or region in the world. The concepts and ideas in this package are harvested from the international community, but are only meant as a source of inspiration and not as a prescriptive document. Each government will have different objectives, preferred intervention strategies, legislation, culture and internal and external capacity to adopt an open data infrastructure for agriculture. Building an open data infrastructure goes beyond the hardware, the software and the data assets. It is about building an ecosystem where the whole chain from data collection, data processing, infrastructure maintenance, information services through to end user interactions needs to be considered, and the interests and roles of different actors in the ecosystem need to be clear and aligned.
To better understand local requirements and opportunities, a national consultative process is required to find local answers to questions such as:
- What are the objectives to be realized with the open data infrastructure?
- Whose data needs will be served and what are the resulting requirements?
- Which local developments and initiatives can be linked to the open data infrastructure?
- What are the risks?
The answers will come as part of an iterative process: it is unlikely that anyone will find one answer and then stick with it, but rather the consultation will initially focus on tackling a challenge area and then extend. Strategies for stakeholder engagement can be found in the World Bank Open Data Toolkit and the FAO E-Agriculture Guide.