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Opendatasoft Launches New Data Lineage Tool to Measure ROI

The company, whose clients include the state of North Carolina and cities across the continent, says the feature helps demonstrate the ROI of data sharing. The tool could help with smart city efforts.

Lines of data in blue coming out of the distance in the bottom left corner of the screen and getting closer.
France-based Opendatasoft, which sells data-sharing technology to public agencies and other groups, has launched a data analysis tool to help clients better visualize, manage and use the information flowing into their organizations.

Among the many uses of this new “data lineage feature” is bolstering the operations of so-called smart cities, Franck Carassus, chief sales officer and co-founder of Opendatasoft, told Government Technology in an email interview.

The new tool can show how and where data is being used with an agency, which in turn can result in better data governance and what the company calls data democratization.

The new data lineage tool can map data flows and provide a dashboard of data use, according to a statement from the company.

“Sharing data with the public and stakeholders is key to demonstrating transparency, increasing efficiency, building trust and enabling innovation,” Carassus said. “However, the very nature of open data sharing makes it difficult to see which data has been reused and how it has been used.”

The tool could have applications in government.

One example he gave focused on smart city mobility data, with the tool helping officials spot which types of data are most popular, and which types of data “could be reused in a mobility app,” he said.

Such use cases can then help demonstrate the ROI of data sharing via key performance indicators (KPIs).

“End users running the Opendatasoft portal can automatically access the feature in the platform’s back office,” Carassus said. “While it is straightforward and easy to use through intuitive dashboards, full documentation and training materials are available to users.”

Opendatasoft has more than 350 clients, he said.

In North America, they include small and large cities such as Morrisville, N.C., and Long Beach, Calif. Agency departments using the company’s technology often focus on smart city efforts, data management and transparency and GIS. The North Carolina Office of State Budget and Management built its LINC portal on the Opendatasoft platform, he said.
Thad Rueter writes about the business of government technology. He covered local and state governments for newspapers in the Chicago area and Florida, as well as e-commerce, digital payments and related topics for various publications. He lives in Wisconsin.