We were very excited to learn that the next IATI Technical Advisory Group (TAG) meeting will be held on 29-30 January 2014 here in Montreal, Canada. We're looking forward to participating in the TAG's first meeting outside of Europe. Not only that, but there will be a 2-day "codeathon" event just beforehand. It seems to be one-half hackathon and one-half conference.
Open Data for Development Challenge
January 27–28, 2014 — Montreal, Canada
Do you want to share your creative ideas and cutting-edge expertise, and make a difference in the world? Do you want to help Canadians and the world understand how development aid is spent and what its impact is? Do you want to be challenged and have fun at the same time?
If so, take the Open Data for Development Challenge!
This unique 36-hour ''codathon'' organized by Foreign Affairs, Trade and Development Canada will bring together Canadian and international technical experts and policy makers to generate new tools and ideas in the fields of open data and aid transparency and contribute to innovative solutions to the world's pressing development challenges.
The event will feature keynote speakers Aleem Walji, Director of the World Bank's Innovation Labs, and Mark Surman, Executive Director of the Mozilla Foundation. It will have two related dimensions:
Technical challenges that involve building applications to make existing open aid and development-related data more useful. Proposed topics include building a data viewer compatible with multilingual data, creating a publishing tool suitable for use by mid-sized Canadian non-profit organizations, developing and testing applications for open contracting, and taking a deep dive into the procurement data of the World Bank Group.
There is room for challenges proposed by the community. Proposals should be submitted through the event website no later than January 8th. Challenges will be published prior to the event, along with key datasets and other related information, to enable participants to prepare for the event.
Policy discussions on how open data and open government can enable development results. This would include the use of big data in development programming, the innovative ways in which data can be mapped and visualized for development, and the impact of open data on developing countries. The international aid transparency community will be encouraged to take promising tools and ideas from the event forward for further research and development.
An overview of the draft program is attached. The event will be in English and French, with interpretation provided in the plenary sessions and panel discussions.
We invite you to register, at no cost, at: https://www.accreditationcanada.gc.ca/ODDC/accreditation.aspx as soon as possible and no later than January 10. A message confirming your registration and providing additional information about the venue and accommodation will be sent to confirmed participants. Please wait for this confirmation before making any travel arrangements. Participants are asked to make their own accommodation arrangements. A limited number of guest rooms will be available to event participants at a preferential rate.
Michael Roberts, from Groupsia, has been working hard to increase Canadian civil society's involvement in IATI. Together with him, we organized Montreal's first IATI meetup before the holidays, in order to start engaging the local community so that they can profit as much as possible from this event.
Our plans for the code-a-thon include our first public meeting on our Domestic Standard for Reporting Initiative, for an IATI-inspired standard for foundations, corporate funders, and governments.