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Honouring the spirit of open government: beyond open data sets

Last summer, we were delighted to help the Ontario Trillium Foundation (OTF) become the first Canadian grantmaker to publish their grants in a raw, open and machine-readable format. Others have taken notice and started to join in — the Canada Council for the Arts launched an open data pilot project, publishing open data about their grants for the past two fiscal years.

OTF has recently announced they have publicly released their board level investment reports. The newly released Investment Summary Report contains an analysis of their grantmaking across Ontario and acknowledges that not everyone in the sector has the capacity, time, or resources to analyze raw grant data themselves.

This decision represents a significant and exciting progression of their open data policy. Moving beyond releasing datasets in an open format to releasing open reports respects the core principles and values of the larger open government movement.

We are hopeful that other funders are paying attention to these developments. Just as OTF’s leadership with grant data did, this release may be the beginning of a new trend.