You're Invited. Again.
Open Data Day will take place on Saturday, 5 March 2016

Open Data + You + Your Community + Your Timezone = Open Data Around the World

Stay tuned for more Updates via the Community mailing list, website and Community wiki updates.

What is this?

Open Data Day is a gathering of citizens in cities around the world to write applications, liberate data, create visualizations and publish analyses using open public data to show support for and encourage the adoption of open data policies by the world's local, regional and national governments.

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Who is this event for?


If you have an idea for using open data, want to find an interesting project to contribute towards, learn about how to visualize or analyze data or simply want to see what's happening, then definitely come participate! No matter your skillset or interests, we are encouraging organizers to foster opportunities for you to learn and help the global open data community grow.

Icon Dev Developers

We need computer cowboys and cowgirls like yourself to wrangle data into something useful. That means visualization, notification, integration, etc., all in the name of doing something crazy and fantastic.

Icon Designer Designers

We need people like you to make the everything look amazing, feel intuitive, and have a smooth user experience. The best application in the world that no one can use... isn't much use! You know the drill.

Icon Library Librarians

I heard you folks like books and eat catalogs of data for breakfast. You beautiful people are going to scour the earth for interesting data, help the rest of us figure out what’s important, and generally be useful.

Icon Stats Statisticians

YES! YOU ARE SO NEEDED. Seriously. While we can find it, blow it up, calculate it, and make it look pretty, we needs us some mean number crunchin’ to present meaningful visualizations. Join up.

Icon Citizens Citizens

We need you the most. If it weren’t for you, this whole thing wouldn’t be happening. We need ideas, cheerleaders, and friends to spread the word.

How Will It Work?

How is this going to work?

These hackathons, like small pieces, will be loosely joined by 5 basic principles.

It will happen on Saturday, March 5, 2016

It can be as big or as small, as long or as short, as you'd like it.

It should be open

Ottawa's open data community attracts a diverse crowd of people to hackathons, with whole families coming out. In the UK groups have done amazing work getting young and diverse group hacking. Veteran hackers have said it over and over again: Our movement is stronger when it is broader.

Anyone can organize a local event

Want to help organize one in your city and/or participate? Add your name to the relevant city on the wiki. Let's try to keep it to one event per city, build some community and get new people together.

You can hack on anything that involves open data

Could be a local or global app, a visualization, proposing a standard for common data sets, scraping data from a government website to make it available for others or even creating your own data catalog of government data.

Let's share ideas across cities on the day

Each city's hackathon should do at least one demo, brainstorm, proposal, or anything that it shares in an interactive way with at members of a hackathon in at least one other city. This could be via video stream, skype, by chat... anything but let's get to know one another and share what we are hacking on. There may be some challenges to making this work: timezones, languages, culture... but who cares, we are problem solvers, let's make it work.

Again, let's not try to boil the ocean. Let's have a bunch of events, where people care enough to organize them, and try to link them together with a simple short connection/presentation. Above all let's raise some awareness, create something, and have some fun.

What to Expect

A lot will be going on. So... expect to:

  • Learn more about open data.
  • Find out how your local and national government could do more to release open data.
  • Engage local non-profits and companies in the uses of open data for the products and missions
  • Meet & network with tons of cool people in your city and around the world.
  • Voice your opinion & share your ideas with the people and media attending.
  • Find out about apps being created, and get to play around with them as well.
  • Help out with parts of the conceptualization, creation, design, advertisement and testing of apps.
  • Conduct an open tutorial sessions around using open data,like learning how to customize google maps to show the data you want to show.
  • Have lots and lots of fun.

What to Bring

Anything! Bring your laptops, mobile phones, phasers set to stun, etc. but above all, your energy and your brains! We’re trying to make this event very hands on, so feel free to bring all your wacky geektronics so that you can participate in all the fun. Don't worry if you don’t bring anything since there will still be tons of stuff to do.

Where is it?

Check the wiki to see where an open data hackathon may be happening near you - if there isn't one, host one!

Help for Organizers

In addition to the wiki where people are organizing, there is also the Open Data Day mailing list which has been an organizing point.

Get started now

App Ideas

are always welcome. Add yours to the wiki here.

Data Sets

If you think you've found a data set that is interesting that might be of use for an app or visualization, add it to the wiki.

The Wiki

is continually evolving but still needs help. Jump in and start contributing to the wiki by adding your name to people interested in helping organize or participate in a city, or other useful and open-data-related information.

Talk to us

Looking forward to high-fiving you when you show up, but until then you can reach us at:


Contact the local organizer in your city... there are engaged citizens who want to talk about open data and what it means for democracy, the economy and engagement near you. If you are really lost, email the list and we'll make sure you are in touch with the right person.


See the wiki for the instigators in a city near you (or become one).

Lightweight coordination by David Eaves @deaves & Rufus Pollock @rufuspollock.

Hosting and support from


The idea for the first Open Data Day started out as an international brainstorm involving some of these characters: