Mayor Bowman opens City information for innovative sharing

WINNIPEG, September 16, 2015 – Mayor Bowman announced changes today that build on his commitment to make City data more accessible to the public, beginning with records produced from the upcoming September 2015 meeting of Council. Providing records in machine-readable format allows for easier searching, record-keeping  and management of data over time, resulting in increased transparency and accountability for decision making, as well as assists Winnipeggers who would like to become more engaged with government activities. 

“I am proud we are making the shift to provide Council records in machine-readable format so we can continue to build on our commitment to open data at the City of Winnipeg,” said Mayor Brian Bowman. “This small, smart change, with the support of the City Clerk’s department, makes information access easier for community groups, media, and aggregators of social media, such as Open Democracy Manitoba, to analyze City data and share it with the public in innovative ways,” 

Going forward, following the September 2015 meeting of Winnipeg City Council, Hansard and disposition documents created for and shared through the Decision Making Information System (DMIS) will be available in machine-readable format.

“Earlier this year, we approached Mayor Bowman with ideas to tweak the process for how information is gathered at City Council meetings,” said Kyle Geske, founding member of Open Democracy Manitoba. “Our aim was to create an online citizen dashboard because we want there to be a place where citizens can quickly learn about the decisions being made at City Hall that affect their everyday lives.”

The online citizen dashboard created by Open Democracy Manitoba using machine-readable Council data is available at www.winnipegelected.ca

Additionally, Mayor Bowman will present one motion at the Executive Policy Committee meeting on September 16th, requesting the Public Service to review all opportunities, such as 311 statistics and CrimeStat, where the City can apply the same end-user value, while maintaining security and privacy requirements, wherever possible, when the City shares large volumes of data and information.

The Public Service is requested to report back to Executive Policy Committee within 90 days.

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