June 9, 2015 10:36 AM
The City of Santa Monica has won a Technology Solutions award from the Public Technology Institute for its Open Data Initiative representing “Transparency, Collaboration and Third Party Applications Through Open Data.” The PTI Solutions Awards recognize outstanding advances in the use of technology to improve the management and delivery of local government services.
In April, Santa Monica’s Open Data Initiative was ranked number 38 in the 2015 InformationWeek Elite 100; a list of the top business technology innovators in the United States. One of only a handful of local governments in the ranking, this designation groups Santa Monica with the very best in the country at developing practical and measurable uses for technology that drive real business value.
Santa Monica open data portals are currently ranked 17th in the U.S. City Open Data Census. The Census is a partnership of Code for America, the Sunlight Foundation, and Open Knowledge Foundation. It is an ongoing, crowd sourced measure of the current state of access to a selected group of datasets in municipalities across the United States.
Santa Monica’s Open Data Portals at data.smgov.net and santamonica.opengov.com make public datasets, which are collected and maintained by the city, available to the community, industry, and public agencies in standardized open formats. Available datasets include the city budget, campaign disclosures, police calls for service, fire hydrants, permits, inspections, Public Library data, public facilities, city wi-fi, address data, city trees, neighborhood organizations, historic landmarks, the Airport, preferential parking, electric vehicle charging stations, bike paths, the Big Blue Bus, and more.
“You want virtual reality, big data analytics, Internet of Things, and mobile apps used in breakthrough ways? The Elite 100 companies are applying all these and more, in ways that will rewrite the rules of business,” writes InformationWeek editor Chris Murphy, who goes on to say “add it up, and you get business applications of technology that are changing our world.”
Chief Information Officer Jory Wolf says “This is public data and these portals make our data available to the public in an easy to access manner. We also expect to derive a side benefit when software developers use our data to create apps for public use.” By launching the Open Data Portal, the City increases government transparency and accountability. It also enables third parties to leverage the potential of government data through the development of applications and services that address public and private demands.