Adopting and managing open data: Stakeholder perspectives, challenges and policy recommendations

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9 Citations (Scopus)


Purpose: The purpose of this paper is to study a multi-institutional and multi-layer nature of open data-driven communication processes that provide a collaborative platform to meet the interests of various stakeholders in advancing public sector innovations, namely, government agents, citizens, independent developers, non-governmental organizations, mass media and businesses alike and understand an important role of mutually beneficial public–private partnerships in the area. Design/methodology/approach: This is a case study research, which itself is based on a combinative approach, especially in applying, in a successive order, two methods of investigation, namely, stakeholder and policy analysis. In general, the combination of these two research techniques is useful in understanding the most important collaborative trends in the area and locating key institutional drivers and challenges that open data policymakers face today in implementing related digital collaborative and participatory platforms. Findings: The open data concept could provide a promising collaborative platform to network various e-government stakeholders and accelerate related technology-driven public reforms. The successful implementation of the idea demands a fairly equal contribution from representatives of both public and private sectors of economy. The case has also clearly demonstrated the importance of cooperation with the local non-governmental sector, independent developers and journalists, whose active participation is a key factor for the overall progress of the open data phenomenon, to a greater degree, as a collaborative movement rather than an instrument of public sector innovations. Research limitations/implications: One of the fundamental limitations of the investigation is that it is a single case study. It explores the development of open data phenomena in the context of such an advanced post-industrial society as Finland. In this regard, in order to support key arguments of the research, it is necessary to compare its findings with the results of similar case studies in other administrative, political and socioeconomic settings, which would open new promising dimensions for future research in this direction. Practical implications: Policy recommendations are proposed by the author in the discussion section, which could help, for example, to boost information campaigns in popularizing open data technologies and its reuse among independent developers. A lot of unique visualizations and illustrations are presented in the paper to help readers grasp better key ideas of the research. In this respect, the paper is intended for a global professional community of open data experts, e-government specialists, political scientists, journalists, lawyers, students of public policy and public administration and all those who are interested in studying the phenomenon from the perspective of its key stakeholders. Social implications: The author of the paper tried to develop a universal framework of case study research that could be used in investigating phenomena of open data not only in Finland but also in the context of other post-industrial societies, especially in analyzing roles of various stakeholders in adopting open data-driven collaborative and civic engagement platforms and startups. Originality/value: This research presents a first case study that investigates a collaborative potential of open data phenomena from a stakeholder perspective in a more holistic manner, especially in analyzing professional networking platforms and related communication activities that meet the interests of stakeholders as diverse as government agents and journalists, independent developers and academia, charities and businesses in an attempt to better understand the fundamental factors of the open data movement as a collaborative socioeconomic trend.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)518-537
Number of pages20
JournalAslib Journal of Information Management
Issue number5
Publication statusPublished - Sep 17 2018


  • Collaboration
  • Finland
  • Open data
  • Open government
  • Policy recommendations
  • Stakeholders

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Information Systems
  • Library and Information Sciences

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