is an open, independent catalogue of Government and Local Body datasets.

Welcome to the Open Data Catalogue

Posted: June 4th, 2009 | Author: barnaclebarnes | Filed under: Blog | 6 Comments »

Looking to download the latest list of Primary Schools? Want to find out the average market rents for Dunedin suburbs and use these in a report? Are you interested in the boundaries of your suburb? If the answer is yes then you may find some of this information hard to come by. Even though this information should be easy to obtain it is sometimes hard to find who to talk to, where to look and worse hidden behind pay-walls and restrictive license¬†agreements.¬†The Open Data Catalogue is an attempt to classify where this information resides, who ‘owns’ it, what license it is distributed under and if it is free or not.

The site is very much a community based affair so if you know of a dataset that we do not have listed then please suggest it here. As you can see *we only have a few datasets at the moment but we hope to add a lot more over time. The datasets listed are the canonical version of the data owned by the Department or Local Council. If you have made derivative works or host your own version of the dataset we would be keen to link to it. Drop me a line and we can work out a way to get these included.

As the site is in its very early stages feedback and comments are welcome and encouraged.


Glen Barnes

glen [at] open [dot] org [dot] nz

*We is Glen Barnes (@barnaclebarnes), Nat Torkington (@gnat) and hopefully a few others over time.

6 Comments on “Welcome to the Open Data Catalogue”

  1. 1 Anita Kean said at 5:40 pm on July 28th, 2009:

    Thanks _so_ much for getting this off the ground. It has taken too long here!
    I’ve tried and tried to access digital elevation information for Auckland streets to produce cycle route gradient maps (ideally online)- the city council and regional council agree it would be useful information but getting the (publicly-funded) data from them for such maps has proved impossible.

    Happy to help out with this project!!

  2. 2 barnaclebarnes said at 8:47 pm on July 28th, 2009:

    Hi Anita. It can be very difficult to get data out of local councils but we are making some progress. If you would like to help out identifying datasets is where we need help the most. If you look at the sources list and pick a department or organisation that you are interested in then submit any datasets they may have. You might also want to try Koordinates for the gradient maps. They have a lot of open geo-spatial data that you can access.

  3. 3 Onyx said at 6:09 pm on August 18th, 2009:

    Go, you good things! XLS spreadsheets everywhere…YUK. The sooner we open up the government’s data, the data we pay for but cannot access, the better. So are you going to be working on what formats government should be using?
    Eg XML, ODT, ODS, YAML, SVG, etc etc
    And then the political clout to actually overcome the inertia?
    Big job guys, but Godspeed.

  4. 4 barnaclebarnes said at 5:44 am on August 22nd, 2009:

    We will be working on that as well but we need to start somewhere and highlighting these areas via the ODC is a first step. We will be putting together guidelines on best practice for departments to follow when releasing data. Any input most welcome on the wiki.

  5. 5 sealander said at 10:43 pm on September 24th, 2009:

    Regarding suburban boundaries – I used to work for a map publisher, and what we found was that the majority of cities in NZ do not have any official suburb boundaries. I think there were a couple of places that were the exception, (Hutt City might have been one of them) where the council actually put boundaries on their maps. Most councils are loathe to lay down any official boundary as people tend to have very firm ideas as to which suburb they live in ;)

  6. 6 MadHutter said at 12:13 am on March 12th, 2010:

    NZ Post have very firm ideas as to which suburb people live in too. I don’t know if you can download it as a dataset, but their online postcode finder will tell you what suburb NZ Post thinks a given address is in.

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