This week, the GovLab, through different partnerships with UNICEF (focused on creating data collaboratives to improve children's lives) and Omidyar Network (studying new ways to match open-data demand and supply to increase impact), launched DataCollaboratives.org. Data Collaboratives are a new form of collaboration built on cross-sector data sharing to solve public problems.
Network chair Beth Simone Noveck described the potential of data collaboratives: "Recent years have seen exponential growth in the amount of data generated and stored around the world, and there is increasing acknowledgement that big data could play a key role in helping to address issues such as world hunger, disaster relief, and disease prevention if data were made widely available to those in positions to glean insights from the information and act upon it."
The new resource collects over 70 examples of data collaboratives in place around the world, a guide for establishing a data collaborative, a rundown of incentives for the private sector to participate, and information on risks and strategies for mitigating them.
"According to Stefaan Verhulst, The GovLab's co-founder and director of research and the head of its Data Collaboratives Initiative, the diverse examples detailed on the site clearly demonstrate the potential of data collaboration as an emerging model of inter-sector digital philanthropy.
'In the coming months and years, they will be essential vehicles for harnessing the vast stores of privately held data toward the public good,' Verhulst said."