Introduction to Open Data initiatives

Encouraging organisations and countries to develop open data policies and build a strong data ecosystem can prove difficult, particularly when no previous open data policy exists.

That is why GODAN has implemented several open data initiatives, with the aim of enabling policy change among partners and other organisations. GODAN is making key strides towards influencing policy change in academia and has just published the Open Access and Open Data at PUSH Universities Report. GODAN’s initiatives have successfully led to policy change in many organisations, notably: USAID, DFID, and the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation, leading to GODAN and its partners being commissioned to advise on the development of new FAIR guidelines for open data in three countries.

How can Open Data play a role in Agriculture?

Growing populations and unpredictable environmental changes are putting pressure on global food systems. To achieve the Sustainable Development Goal of zero hunger and increase food security, governments and multilateral agencies are looking to data for answers.

How can Open Data play a role in Nutrition?

With over 500 million children undernourished, nutrition is a growing global problem. Good quality, comparable, timely nutrition data is vital for guiding government interventions, and for improving existing initiatives.


GODAN has built a robust global network of more than 930 partners, from national governments, non-governmental, international and private sector organisations.

GODAN Open Data initiatives include
The GODAN Ministerial Conference in Kenya 2017

One of GODAN’s most successful initiatives was the 2017 GODAN ministerial conference on Global Open Data for Agriculture and Nutrition in Nairobi, Kenya. Organised by GODAN, the event brought together a number of nations to build efforts in Africa and the broader Global South to ensure full participation in achieving the 2030 goals through data. The outcome was a historic 16 article declaration from Kenya and 15 African Ministers from Sudan, Uganda, Ghana, Rwanda, Sierra Leone, the Republic of Congo and South Sudan in support of comprehensive open data collaboration.

Open Access and Open Data at PUSH (Presidents United to Solve Hunger ) Universities:

Another of GODAN’s initiatives was a study of the development, use and promotion of open data and open access in 99 PUSH Universities in partnership with PUSH.

Donor Work

GODAN and Open Data Institute (ODI) published a report on Donor Open Data Policy and Practice , which focused on jointly funded grantees from the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation, the United Kingdom Government Department for International Development (DfID) and the United States Agency for International Development (USAID).

Government Open Up Guide for Agriculture

GODAN created the Government Open-Up Guide for Agriculture (previously known as the AgPack) in partnership with the Open Data Charter and Open Data Institute. The project began in 2016 and aims to guide governments to identify and publish data sets that may be relevant for the agricultural sector, and could catalyse sustainable agricultural production in support of Sustainable Development Goal 2: Zero Hunger (SDG2).