Powered by Data at the Developers for Development Challenge

Last week Powered by Data and Ajah attended the Open Data for Development Challenge in Montreal on January 27-28th. The event was full of excellent challenges that had clearly defined problems and valuable expected outcomes, so the team split up to work on as many possible. We participated in and helped lead three (and a half!) challenges over the two days, all of which had some great results and interesting outcomes.

Michael started his time on the team investigating a Canadian IATI publishing tool to help small and mid-sized organizations overcome the barriers to adopting IATI. He switched early on to participate in the first public working session on the Domestic Reporting Standard for grant information, called DRSI. The session was very successful, and resulted in the first draft of the standard.

12193511824_7d8b353935Michael presenting DRSI
Photo: Salta Sadykova

Gabe took over the Canadian IATI publishing tool challenge, and the group arrived at several useful conclusions to help promote adoption of IATI, including a new way of looking at the standard to help the organizations internally, rather than just as an external publishing format.

12193511824_7d8b353935Gabe (right) intently solving problems
Photo: Salta Sadykova

Daniel Bernhard joined the team led by Patrick Montjourides of UNESCO to create an Education Dashboard. The team succeeded, and built a map that showed education indicators collected by UNESCO, OECD indicators and some of the IATI information to identify need and funding gaps around the world.

12193511824_7d8b353935Daniel (left) working on the UNESCO map
Photo: Salta Sadykova

Finally, Jesse led a developer team from Ajah including Nicolas Cadou, Mathieu Leduc-Hamel and Devon Meunier. They gathered data on the international activities of Canadian charities, then built an interactive map to allow users to explore which Canadian organizations were operating in which countries. The tool discovered that the majority of the money going abroad from Canadian charities was from organizations that were not likely to adopt the IATI standard, and were not affiliated with the Department of Foreign Affairs, Trade and Development.

12193511824_7d8b353935Some Ajah developers poring through charity data
Photo: Salta Sadykova

Thanks to the Department of Foreign Affairs, Trade and Development for hosting the event, as well as to Michael Roberts and Yohanna Loucheur, who did the heavy lifting to bring everything together and make it a success. We were all impressed with the challenges, and proud to be part of the event.

For more photos of the event, check out the Flickr album.

EventsJesse Bourns