Open data involves the release of data so that anyone can access, use and share it. One of the main objectives of making data open is to promote transparency. For open data and transparency initiatives to lead to accountability, the required conditions include: getting the right data published; enabling actors to find, process and use information, and to act on any outputs; and enabling institutional or social forms of enforceability or citizens’ ability to choose better services.
This topic guide discusses the definitions, theories, challenges and debates presented by the relationship between these concepts, summarises the current state of open data implementation in international development, and highlights lessons and resources for designing and implementing open data programmes.
Chile is a successful open government reformer. The implementing agencies have achieved the targets set in the national action plans for transparency and access to information commitments. These reforms are changing administrative practices and attitudes about transparency and access to information management, but still fall short of reaching the citizens. Chile’s success responds to the institutional capacity of public agencies and to the adoption of commitments that are part of their strategic work plans. However, challenges related to contingent political factors, inter-agency coordination, and monitoring affect the action plans’ potential for transforming how the state relates to its citizens. These factors also influence the limited priority that stakeholders attribute to open government processes.