1. Design for search to enable data discovery

We currently don’t know what exists and can’t easily find things. We need organisations to publish open data descriptions of the data that they hold so that it can be found. This will help people identify what questions might be answerable and where the data gaps are. 

2. Pre-enable access to data to unlock action

Much like Creative Commons explicitly gives permission for re-using content in advance, we need to work out how to pre-emptively license data for different use-cases. At the moment even if we can find the data we need it is hard to license for a specific use.

If we are enabling greater data discovery, we need to follow through and enable greater access, without negotiating every use on a case-by-case basis. Some data will be highly confidential or carry security or ethical concerns. Working together we can work this through to reduce the ‘transactional friction’ in getting access. This will need to involve legal, business and technology experts.

3. Understand user’s needs so they can create impact

Finding and accessing data is useless unless the data we get is usable. We need to build on the huge wealth of knowledge, examples, principles and practice that has helped shape the web to truly unlock the web of data for everyone.

Icebreaker One is focussed on helping with these challenges. The areas in red below are in scope and are enabling to the other sections.