Governments and leading institutions around the world have awakened to not only the tremendous value their data delivers, but also the value of sharing this data. Nations, Provincial and State Governments, Cities and private sector leaders have launched open data portals to both share more information with citizens, encourage private sector and non-government actors to develop applications and services and promote coordination and innovation across government silos.

To implement their Open Data solution, DataBC required that the data must be:

Discoverable

Citizens, Business and Public Sector data users must be able to find the data they need. This requires data to be searchable and indexed for easy discovery

Accessible

The data must be accessible via downloaded files, an API or subscription feed, and must be available on all major mobile and desktop devices

Sharable

Once the data is retrieved, it must be sharable and not protected. This means that all data has to be licensed for public use.

Usable and Reliable

Data must be reliable and consistent in its availability , completeness, currency, quality, accuracy and fitness for use.


Highway Three Solutions has been engaged with the BC Government since 2008 in supporting and implementing data solutions in an evolving industry.  The initial solution was a customized off the shelf product called Metastar.  Highway Three Solutions supported that system for several years, while developing a custom built Java application called Open Data Supplier Interface (ODSI).  After a number of years supporting the ODSI application, an evaluation of commercial products was performed and (with the Highway Three recommendation) the product CKAN was determined to be a viable replacement for ODSI.

Ckan is the world’s leading open source data portal platform and powers most of the world’s largest and highest profile open data repositories. Local governments in cities such as Washington DC, Vancouver, London, San Francisco, Ottawa and Edmonton have launched open data portals to both share more information with citizens, encourage private sector and non-government actors to develop applications and services and promote coordination and innovation across government silos.

Highway Three Solutions handled the implementation of CKAN including the infrastructure recommendations, custom extensions to accommodate the BC Government (WebADE/authorization, security at the group level, sector hierarchy, and secured/unsecured data records).   The front end of CKAN was customized to provide a UX geared towards the DataBC geographic and non-geographic record types.  In addition, H3 implemented integrations with back end systems such as the data warehouse and online ordering system.  Highway Three has also spent considerable time and energy contributing to the core CKAN community and participating in the technical calls and planning sessions for subsequent releases.