Join us for “Community impact with open data: Two models from Canada and the United States”


Change in cities is a community effort. Data is the newest tool that cities have to understand and address their most entrenched challenges. For data to have the biggest impact, however, it needs to be open and it needs to involve residents. City staff will need to incorporate resident feedback in their data-driven work as well as support residents in using open data on projects of their own.

Involving community members in open data work can be unfamiliar, unclear, or even intimidating. How can city staff recognize these fears, understand the powerful potential of public collaboration, and cultivate that power to create a robust and enduring open data program?

Canadian nonprofit OpenNorth and the U.S.-based Sunlight Foundation Open Cities team have both created models for what engaged, collaborative data publication and use looks like. Join us for a webinar conversation on Tuesday, February 27, 2018 from 12-1 PM EST to learn about these two approaches and how your city can use them for your own work empowering community use of open data.

OpenNorth’s thematic, focused cluster engagement model on city resilience and smart city issues was created while developing the recently launched City of Toronto’s open data master plan and roadmap. The model was prototyped and refined thereafter and responds to the growing need of cities for meaningful, issue-based engagement methods. Jean-Noé Landry, OpenNorth’s Executive Director, will talk about the organization’s engagement model and its relevance in dynamic and diverse ecosystems such as Toronto and Montreal.

Sunlight Open Cities’ Tactical Data Engagement framework is a four-step process to help communities support community use of open data by finding a focus area, refining use cases, designing a plan, and implementing an intervention. Sunlight recently published detailed user personas as part of their work helping the City of Madison, Wisconsin create more equitable and complete neighborhoods. Stephen Larrick, Open Cities Director, will join the event to talk about this model and how the process has evolved in Madison.

Register for this webinar to learn about these two different approaches to helping your community use open data, and to ask questions about challenges that your city is facing. You’ll also be able to follow the conversation on Twitter at the hashtag #TacticalData.

Bring your questions, concerns, and curiosity about community involvement and open data. We look forward to discussing it with you on February 27.