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Closing the Data Divide: The Need for Open Data

Empowering people and organizations to share and use data more effectively

Microsoft is launching an Open Data Campaign to help close the looming ‘data divide’ and help organizations of all sizes to realize the benefits of data and the new technologies it powers. We believe everyone can benefit from opening, sharing, and collaborating around data to make better decisions, improve efficiency, and even help tackle some of the world’s most pressing societal challenges.

Open Data Campaign Launch

“We’re excited to work with others, to share data with others, and perhaps most importantly, to learn from others. Because if we all work together, and take this on as the challenge it deserves, we can create a stronger foundation for inclusive economic growth, based on data, around the world.” – Brad Smith, President, Microsoft

“By working together in an open way, we believe we can empower every organization to realize the value of data and AI – only then can we begin to close the data divide.” – Jennifer Yokoyama, Chief IP Counsel, Microsoft

“We want to work with companies and governments to build an open and trusted data ecosystem. We want to build a world where data works for everyone, for the many, not the few.” – Sir Nigel Shadbolt, Co-Founder and Chair, Open Data Institute

Microsoft On the Issues Blog

Closing the Data Divide: The Need for Open Data

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Explainer Video

Explainer: The Open Data Opportunity

Tools and Capabilities

Data Use Agreements

Backgrounder & FAQ

Read the Backgrounder & FAQ

Open Use of Data Agreement (O-UDA)

README | Annotated Agreement | Agreement
Open Use of Data Agreement GitHub repo

Computational Use of Data Agreement (C-UDA)

README | Annotated Agreement | Agreement
Computational Use of Data Agreement GitHub repo

Data Use Agreement for Open AI Model Development (DUA-OAI)

README | Annotated Agreement | Agreement

Data Use Agreement for Data Commons (DUA-DC)

README | Annotated Agreement | Agreement

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Open Data Policy Lab

data policy lab logo

The Open Data Policy Lab works to support government decision-makers at the local, state, and national levels to accelerate the responsible sharing of data by lowering existing barriers and building a center of expertise that will be available to all stakeholders involved in democratizing access to data.

Go to Open Data Policy Lab Website

Differential Privacy

Differential Privacy makes it possible to extract useful insights from datasets, while safeguarding the privacy of individuals.

Learn more about Differential Privacy

Azure Open Datasets

A curated collection of publicly available datasets that are ready to use in machine learning workflows and easy to access from Azure services.

Find the Azure Open Datasets here

Examples of data sharing today

Cascadia Data Discovery Initiative

The Cascadia Data Discovery Initiative aims to establish the Cascadia region as the global leader in biomedical data science, focusing on collaboration, data sharing, and data-driven research

Adaptive Biotechnologies and Microsoft Partnership

Adaptive Biotechnologies and Microsoft expand partnership to decode COVID-19 immune response and provide open data access.

LinkedIn - World Bank Partnership

LinkedIn and the World Bank partnered to build a digital dashboard that visualizes the company’s labor market data for over 100 World Bank member countries

Answer ALS

Answer ALS is the single largest collaborative ALS research project working to build a comprehensive collection of data on people living with the disease in an effort to help researchers discover a cure

Other Resources

Find links to resources that support open data and data sharing.

Licensing, Governance, and Legal Tools

Open Data Repositories