Background

Open Development Initiative (ODI), a project of East-West Management Institute (EWMI), stimulates public demand, builds coalitions, and offers a constantly evolving platform to support the transparent sharing and analysis of data to improve and inform constructive dialogue and decision making for sustainable and equitable development. 

ODI has been active in the open data sector in the Mekong region since 2011. The first of ODI’s open data projects, Open Development Cambodia independently aggregates information across a wide range of sectors to draw a development portrait employing innovative visuals, including GIS mapping and time lapse animation of development issues. ODC officially registered as a local NGO in August 2015.

Our Open Development Mekong platform launched as an integrated regional open data platform in 2015, with five national websites and one regional website serving Cambodia, Lao PDR, Myanmar, Thailand, Vietnam.

 

 

 

Vision and Mission

The Open Development Mekong network has developed the following vision and mission: 

Vision: People have data and information to improve their lives. 

Mission: To make data and objective information accessible and useful to all people in the Lower Mekong.

Approach

The ODM signatory approach relies on impartial presentation of data, using open data standards alongside objective analysis through visualisations, briefings, maps, and other data products to increase transparency and accessibility. The platform has since evolved into a network supporting data and digital rights that are reflective of and accessible to all citizens across the Mekong region. Our target audience of civil society, private sector, government, academia, and marginalised communities utilise ODM’s rich repository of data and information to support research, analysis, and decision-making. This approach natively supports crowdsourcing data and facilitates multi-sectoral and transborder views. The ODM datahub is now a reliable and diverse platform that provides data and information on significant development issues of national and regional relevance. 

The ODM Teams

The ODM teams are located in all the Mekong countries and work collaboratively to develop a network of local data sharing partnerships and to build capacity for data and digital literacy across the region. Fundamental to all the work we undertake is building strong data constituents who can act to level the playing field within the existing Mekong data ecosystem by demanding data rights to ensure agency over data and information to exercise their rights.    

 

 

 

 

 

OD4D Asia Hub

In late 2018, the ODI expanded to regional Asia through a partnership with the Open Data for Development (OD4D) initiative launched by IDRC to create an OD4D Asia Hub. The ODI network co-facilitates this network alongside Sinar Project (Malaysia). The hub will focus on improving availability and impact of open data in Asia through research and strategic coordination of existing as well as new regional collaboration initiatives. Under the OD4D umbrella the Asia hub aims to build a stronger community of practice in Asia consisting of open data technologists, civil society, government officials, donors, and researchers. This community of open data advocates is increasing the quality, impact, and sustainability of individual initiatives and collaboration in the region, establishing links with regional and global networks, and building on the vision outlined in the Open Data in Asia 2020 report.

 

The ODM network continually seeks partnerships to expand and enhance operations, acquire data, and increase accessibility and participation. If you have questions, comments, suggestions or information to help build the Open Development Network and/or enhance the site we’d love to hear from you: contact@ewmi-odi.org.

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