Open Knowledge

Open Knowledge

Open Knowledge
OK Main logo
Founded May 20, 2004 (2004-05-20)
Founder Rufus Pollock
Type Nonprofit organization
Focus Open knowledge broadly, including open access, open content, open science and open data.
Area served
Key people
Rufus Pollock
Slogan Sonnets to statistics, genes to geodata...
Website .orgokfn

Open Knowledge is a

  • Official website
  • A self-published history of the Open Knowledge Foundation

External links

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  23. ^ Open Knowledge Projects
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See also

The Panton Principles (for Open Data in Science) in 2010 had large contributions from Open Knowledge people and in 2011 Jonathan Gray and Peter Murray-Rust successfully obtained funding from OSF for two fellowships, held by Sophie Kershaw[38] and Ross Mounce.[39] In 2013 OKF obtained sponsorship from CCIA[40] for 3 fellowships, which were awarded to Rosemarie Graves,[41] Sam Moore[42] and Peter Kraker.[43][44]

Panton Principles and Fellowships (Open data in Science)

Annually, Open Knowledge opens the biggest event internationally for Open Data called International Open Data Hackthon.

Much of the collaboration with other related organisations occurs via events that the foundation hosts.[34] Its premier event is the Open Knowledge Conference (OKCon), which has been held annually since 2007.[35] Other events have been organised within the areas of data visualisation[36] and free information network infrastructure.[37]


  • CKAN, a tool that provides store for metadata. This enables governments to quickly and cheaply provide a catalogue of their data.
  • Datahub,[24] a community-run catalogue of useful sets of data on the Internet. Depending on the type of data (and its conditions of use), Datahub may also be able to store a copy of the data or host it in a database, and provide some basic visualisation tools.
  • Open bibliography, broadly construed as efforts to catalogue and build tools for working with and publishing bibliographic resources,[25][26] with particular emphasis on those works that are in the public domain and public domain calculators. Examples include the Bibliographica,[27] Public Domain Works,[28] Open Shakespeare,[29] Open Text Book[30] and The Public Domain Review[31] projects.
  • OpenGLAM is an initiative run by the Open Knowledge Foundation. It promotes free and open access to digital cultural heritage, held by GLAMs: Galleries, Libraries, Archives and Museums.[32] OpenGLAM is co-funded by the European Commission as part of the DM2E (Digitised Manuscripts to Europeana) project.[33]
  • Open Economics
  • Open Knowledge Forums
  • Information Accessibility Initiative
  • Open geodata
  • Guide to open data licensing
  • The annual Open Knowledge Conference (OKCon) and OKFestival
  • "Get the Data" — a web-site for questions and answer on how to get data sets.
  • POD - Product Open Data

The foundation places a strong interest in the use of open source technologies. Its software projects are hosted on GitHub, which utilises the Git version control software. Some of the projects are listed below:[23]

OpenGLAM logo
Banner for the Geodata project in Spanish


Rufus Pollock, one of Open Knowledge's founders, and current board secretary sits on the UK government's Public Sector Transparency Board.[22]

Outside of technology, Open Knowledge plays a role in advocating for openness broadly. This includes supporting the drafting of reports, facilitating consultation[19][20] and producing guides.[21]

Open Knowledge has produced the Open Knowledge Definition, an attempt to clarify some of the ambiguity surrounding the terminology of openness.[17] as well as the Open Software Service Definition[18]

Open Knowledge is an active partner with organisations working in similar areas, such as open educational resources.[16]


for real-time communications and also hosts events. IRC for virtual discussion, utilises [15] The organisation tends to support its aims by hosting infrastructure for semi-independent projects to develop. This approach to organising was hinted as one of its earliest projects was a project management service called KnowledgeForge, which runs on the

Many of Open Knowledge's projects are technical in nature. Its most prominent project, CKAN, is used by many of the world's governments to host open catalogues of data that their countries possess.[14]


It also supports 19 working groups.

Open knowledge has 9 official chapters and 49 groups in different countries.


The Open Knowledge Advisory Council includes people from the areas of open access, open data, open content, open science, data visualization and digital rights, such as:

The current (2014) Open Knowledge Board is made up of:

In April 2015 Pavel Richter, took on the role of CEO of Open Knowledge. Pavel was formerly Executive Director of Wikimedia Deutschland.


It was co-founded[11] by Rufus Pollock who remains the Board Secretary after serving on the Board until 2013.[12] The company Open Knowledge Foundation Limited was incorporated on May 20, 2004.

  • Promoting the idea of open knowledge, both what it is, and why is it a good idea.
  • Running open knowledge events, such as OKCon.
  • Working on open knowledge projects, such as Open Economics or Open Shakespeare
  • Providing infrastructure, and potentially a home, for open knowledge projects, communities and resources. For example, the KnowledgeForge service and CKAN.
  • Acting at UK, European and international levels on open knowledge issues.

The aims of Open Knowledge are:[1]

Joris Pekel[9] presenting at GLAM-WIKI 2013[10]



  • Aims 1
  • People 2
  • Network 3
  • Operations 4
    • Advocacy 4.1
    • Technical 4.2
    • Events 4.3
    • Panton Principles and Fellowships (Open data in Science) 4.4
  • See also 5
  • References 6
  • External links 7

[8].Open Knowledge Definition (ODbL) and the Open Database Licence For example, it supported the development of the [7] and licensing advice around open content issues.[6]