Measuring the actions taken to publish open data and embedding an open data culture within government can highlight opportunities to improve open data initiatives through multi-stakeholder co-creation and collaboration.

The Open Data Charter (the ‘Charter’) is a collaboration between governments and experts working to make data open. It was founded in 2015 based on six principles for how governments should publish information, developed by governments, civil society and experts from around the world. The principles represent a globally-agreed set of aspirational norms. Since then they have been adopted and endorsed by over 90 governments and organizations. The Charter’s Measurement and Accountability Working Group brings together public officials, open data practitioners, civil society groups, and representatives from international organizations to develop mechanisms to promote accountability and monitoring processes for members of the Charter.

The working group includes the researchers behind the main measurement tools analysing and measuring the actions of governments to open up government data: the Open Data Barometer (ODB), the Global Open Data Index (GODI), the OECD OURdata Index (OURdata), the Open Data Inventory (ODIN), and the European Open Data Maturity Assessment (EODMA).

Open data measurement at a glance

Why measure?

To inform progress

To improve accountability

To provide an evidence base for future research

Who should measure?

Intergovernmental organizations

Governments (Charter adopters)

Civil society


What to measure?

Each principle commitment (and its components)

How to measure

Read below!

As a by-product from our work, we will:

Revise Charter principles and improve definitions

Identify gaps/overlaps, complementary/divergent measurement tools

Identify opportunities to improve the measurement of Charter principles

The Measurement Guide is an analysis of the Charter’s principle commitments in relation to existing open government data assessment tools: what these tools measure, what they do not measure, and how they complement or differ from each other. This supports transparency of open data assessment tools and their methodologies for all audiences.

The Measurement Guide helps:

  • Governments to better understand what criteria they are measured against and how to open up more and better data.

  • Civil society to better hold governments accountable for what they publish.

  • Researchers to improve existing methodologies.

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