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Los Angeles W3C Webinar

From: Steven Adler <adler1@us.ibm.com>
Date: Wed, 19 Mar 2014 14:23:30 -0400
To: "DWBP WG" <public-dwbp-wg@w3.org>, IBM Open Data Group <IBM_Open_Data_Group%IBMUS@us.ibm.com>
Message-ID: <OF302E8260.5572121D-ON85257CA0.006368AA-85257CA0.0065075A@us.ibm.com>
We had a great call today with five speakers representing the County and 
City of Los Angeles:

Suzy Jack, Deputy Comptroller to the City of LA
Juan Lopez, Special Assistant to the Comptroller
Kyle Hall, Special Assistant to the Comptroller
Ari Farahani, Chief Data Officer of the County of LA
Jose Sotto, Open Data Strategist for the County of LA

I have posted a recording of the webinar here: 

A copy of their presentation is here: 

My notes:

1.  LA is in the early stages of their open data strategy.  Unlike Palo 
Alto, who sees data as a source of innovation and growth for the city, and 
unlike NYC who are beginning to see data in this way, most politicians and 
administrators in LA see data as a chronicle of human activity and have 
not yet learned to see it as a source for positive change.

2.  LA is constrained by the recession and persistent resource 
constraints, which impacts innovation and risk aversion.  There are very 
few technical resources able to manage data production and publishing.  LA 
is also constrained by legal requirements to contract with legal entities 
who can provide solution support.  They cannot rely on Open Source 
software because communities of developers do not provide adequate support 
and the city lacks the internal resources to solve technical problems on 
their own.

3.  Despite these constraints, LA has embarked on an Open Data Strategy, 
publishing their data in a Socrata Open Data Catalog.  LA said they have 
37 open technical tickets with Socrata and talk to them daily.  Working 
with CKAN would not be possible.  Even Data.Gov only has 4 dedicated 
resources supporting the CKAN implementation and is desperately looking 
for more skilled resources.  LA said that while Open Source software is 
free, supporting it is not free and they would rather work with a 
dedicated organization like Socrata who make their software easy to use 
for non-techies than communicate with a loosely federated open source 
community (which they are legally forbidden to work with anyway).

4.  The LA City open data portal publishes financial budget data and has 
already been a big success for the 88 City Councils relying on this data 
for Council meetings across LA.

5.  LA was delighted to participate in this webinar and pledged to 
collaborate with us in the future as W3C develops Best Practices and even 
agreed to attend the TPAC meeting in Santa Clara in October.

Thanks to everyone who could participate.  Hope others have a chance to 
listen to the webinar recording before we meet together in London on 

Best Regards,


Motto: "Do First, Think, Do it Again"

Received on Wednesday, 19 March 2014 18:24:42 UTC

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