Embedding sustainability: from design to evaluation
Portals’ sustainability – how they respond and adapt to challenges – is therefore important. Yet most portals were created quickly as part of a politically driven open data initiative, without feasibility studies, business cases, strategy or user research. Many were built simply because governments felt they ought to have one. In short, most were set up without sustainability in mind.
Portals have sought to address this in myriad ways. They have worked closely with user communities to prioritise data publication, developed business cases to win over politicians, made technical updates to ensure that data publication processes are scalable, and developed and automated ways of measuring their progress.
However, most have not yet embedded sustainability into their design and processes in a holistic way. This means building sustainability into how they are governed, how they are financed, their architecture, their operations and the metrics that monitor their progress.
In the report we set out recommendations in each of these areas, based on interviews with portal owners across Europe. By sharing common experiences and best practice, we hope to enable portals to learn from one another.
We will repeat the research at the end of 2017 to test the usefulness of our recommendations and look more closely at certain areas. If you have any comments, or would like to be involved in future research, please get in touch.