Johnathan Gray over at the Open Knowledge Foundation blogs today about a private citizen in Sweden who is building Opengov.se, a free repository of government data.
Peter Kranz, who runs the site, has been contacted by both civil servants that want help with open data plans and politicians that want advice on how legislation should change to increase the amount of open government data.
He became interested in open government data, after starting to build eurlex.nu, a commentable semantic web version of European Union Legal Information. He was frustrated by the state of existing official websites, so decided to build a new version of the site – but found that he???d have to pay 10,000 Euros to access the data plus 3,000 EUR for each additional language.
As with other European countries, many agencies in Sweden charge for access to raw data. For example, SMHI, the Swedish Meteorological and Hydrological Institute, charges for access to weather data. As a result, people using weather information in their applications get data from the Norwegian authorities instead.