The Helsinki Region Infoshare project initiated by the cities of the Helsinki metropolitan area opens up the cities’ databases for everybody. The publicly available data can be found at the new web service www.hri.fi. The data can be utilized free of charge.
The Helsinki Region Infoshare web service makes public data from the Helsinki Region available for anyone to use. The data mainly consists of statistics and forecasts, at the moment. Earlier, public data in the region has been used to visualize demographic statistics, to facilitate housing and job searches, to create a mobile version of Helsinki Region Transport’s Journey Planner, and to allow the procurement announcements of authorities to be browsed on the map.
The web service is open to everybody but it is especially targeted at users of statistical data, application developers and others who are interested in open data. The users of the service can give feedback on the data, discuss, and make request on new data sources to be opened.
Publicly available data enables new services and efficient use of data
The core idea of the Helsinki Region Infoshare project is that opening public data and making it available for users helps to create new services and business in the region. For example, open data can be used to build new web applications that benefit citizens. Making data publicly available is also intended to facilitate research and development. It is meant to increase the participation of citizens and their understanding of their housing areas. The data can be used to monitor, analyze and visualize social phenomena.
Moving forward by listening to users
The web service now published is a beta version. The site will be developed further and expanded on the basis of user feedback. The target is in 2012, when the service should include a great deal of statistical and other data from the Helsinki Region. The project will also become part of the World Design Capital Helsinki 2012 programme.