The open data movement is generally seen as a way for people within a country to leverage datasets released by various levels of government for its residents.

But the federal department of Foreign Affairs and Trade believes there can be an international use as well. That’s why its organized an Open Data for Development Challenge Jan 27-28 in Montreal.

Dubbed a 36-hour codathon, it will bring together Canadian and international technical experts and policy makers to generate new tools and ideas for using open data and to help meet challenges in the developing world.

The event follows the federal government’s enthusiasm for open data.

Keynote speakers will be Aleem Walji, director of the World Bank’s Innovation Labs, and Mark Surman, executive director of the Mozilla Foundation.

There will be discussions on how open data and open government can be used in development, using big data, data mapping and visualization.

Sessions will also look at how to build applications to make open existing aid and development-related data more useful, building a data viewer compatible with multilingual data, creating a publishing tool that can be used by Canadian non-profit organizations, developing and testing applications for open contracting, and data procurement of the World Bank.

Those who want to participate should register online before Jan. 10.


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