Resources for Ann Arbor

Best Practices from Ann Arbor

  • Motivated by Apps for Democracy in DC, citizens and internal agencies began to advocate for the publication of public data sets. The Mayor’s Office worked to release datasets for application development and research. While the applications growth was rather slow (probably because of static information), data was heavily used for research at the City’s higher education institutions.
  • Working with limited resources in labor and funding, the City sought cost-effective and existing ways to publish the data. Remember that was in 2008, before the boom the government transparency and open data movement. Datasets were coordinated by City’s IT department and business development agencies to ensure confidential information does not become public. Nonetheless, with almost zero budget, the rather large data respository for Ann Arbor is quite impressive.
  • The City is exploring ways to add more datasets and make them more dynamic. They’re trying to build more applications; since their data is usually static, developers have lost some incentive to expand their apps. Nonetheless, the City of Ann Arbor is open to suggestions in implementing a cost-effective plan on their open data movement.