The multidimensional importance of local open data

Jump starting the development of portal of Korça Municipality

Open Data is one of the tech related thingies which has risen the attention not only to data scientists and decision-makers but to every citizen due to it's importance to transparency and its applications that use these data. As a concept, it is a sui generis scientific tool which provides a practical access to tools that offer democracy, directly. Though still a genuine paradigm of simple policy making and public infrastructure, open data demands the combination of several scientific disciplines and human knowledge as statistics, economy, social sciences, geography, etc.

Open data FAQ / Open Data Goldbook

Of course, there are some definitions for Open Data, but most of them converge in accessible and machine readable statistics by everyone, collected together for reference or analysis. Open data can be used by everyone under a free license, in diversified ways, for different purposes. We are fascinated by the fact that there are thousands and thousands of communities of contributors, users and especially decision-makers who are generating and using open data around the world and we have not even seen the full potential of the use cases of OD yet.

This world wide movement shares a lot of features, principals and goals with free open source software (FLOSS) communities, open knowledge, open government, open source education, etc. Hence, our collective is highly involved and has the required expertise in this area to implement OD related projects with a holistic approach.

Also getting started from the previous good experiences, this is the reason why UNDP Albania distinguished our team to work on an ambitious project: the implementation of an open data portal for the city of Korça, located in the southeastern part of Albania. In this context, our team has to materialize the technical expertise and principles for contributions to the public domain.

Museum of Education in Korça / Photo by Idobi / CC BY 3.0 License.

Introducing: Open Data Goldbook in Albanian language for Korça Municipality

After an extensive research on a local and international level, we found out that there is a lack of documentation in Albanian language related to anything 'open data' related. That's why, before jump starting the technical elements of the project, we translated in Albanian Open Data Goldbook, event if it wasn't one of the requirements.

Open Data Goldbook is a publishing of European Data Portal, which in our view is quite a solid document for anyone interested in holding, managing and using data. This translation was not easy for us, notably when you we realized the leak of technical terminology in the Albanian language. In this translation, we were dedicated to adapt literally the most of concepts in Albanian, according to the principles for local context and local contribution.

Getting involved

The product is the result of a collective work. We divided the work into chapters and after the first translation, we had to check out the translation of other teammates in a rotation and vice versa. As we know from the experience, rectification is quite crucial in a collective work.

We know that refinement couldn't be always perfect. This is why we decided to push further the democratic process of participation by publishing the material online and ask for contributions and engagement from the local community. That's why...

... we invite everyone to contribute with the translation and  graphic elements in Albanian language. It's easy, just visit the links below:

Our team has already reached for local free open source and open data enthusiasts to get involved in the localization process and we really can't wait to see the results. The involvement of the local community is also an important element for the production of OD Goldbook as an e-book and web format. But this is a theme for another blog post, so stay tuned.  

Cover image: Stephen Dawson via Unsplash / CC BY-SA 4.0 License.

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This article is published under a CC BY-SA 4.0 License.
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