|Loss of Government Research & Community Based Idea|
Ted Hildebrandt from Community Development Halton, is a member of the Community Data Program and has been engage in opening and sharing data in the social sector for a number of years. He was intrumental a encouraging Social Planning Council to take up community based mapping.
He produces with CDH Community Dispatches which are loaded with community scaled government produced data arranged in a way that is useful to municipal council and their members.
Ted shared the following perspective regarding the loss of government research after one of the OGP Civil Society consultation call:
I just wanted to follow up with a thought that was triggered by Heather’s comments on archiving and expanded on by Tracey. One of the things that I have identified with greater clarity in recent times is the extent to which we seem to be losing some good research documents, either by design or by sloppiness. As governments at all levels change funding priorities, there are organizations that disappear (like CPRN) and we risk losing the great archive of research materials. Fortunately, in the case of CPRN, Carleton University is hosting the archive. But that isn’t always the case.
As Tracey pointed out, when not only governments, but any organization, goes through a change of their online presence, the risk of losing access to important research, data and other important information becomes real. I have witnessed that with a number of social planning organizations that have either lost funding and closed their doors to those groups reworking their websites and making decisions about what to include in their “update.” In the process, we lose valuable historical documents and data, often of the kind that is important to civil society.
I like the kind of initiative that the Edmonton Social Planning Council took in creating a research and resource hub for Alberta’s third sector called threeSOURCE (www.threesource.ca).
Of course, this all involves dedicated resources, which are hard to find for these kind of activities within our sector.