The ODI has developed a new approach for organisations to identify and manage data ethics considerations: the Data Ethics Canvas

Data ethics is a rapidly emerging area. Increasingly, those collecting, sharing and working with data are exploring the ethics of their practices and, in some cases, being forced to confront those ethics in the face of public criticism.

Codes of data ethics are being developed across sectors, ethics training is becoming more common and debates are accelerating on issues like the monetisation of personal data, bias in data sources and algorithms, and the consequences of under-representation in data.

The Data Ethics Canvas is designed to help identify potential ethical issues associated with a data project or activity. It promotes understanding and debate around the foundation, intention and potential impact of any piece of work, and helps identify the steps needed to act ethically.

null Download the Data Ethics Canvas (recommended print size: A3)

Whitepaper: Helping organisations navigate ethical concerns in their data practices

This paper explores the relationship between data ethics and legal compliance, some existing data ethics frameworks and ethical considerations in data collection, sharing and use. After this exploration – and considering the challenge of agreeing practical data ethics frameworks for sectors, societies or globally that it highlights – the paper offers an approach, The Data Ethics Canvas, for organisations to identify and manage data ethics considerations.
Download the whitepaper

The Data Ethics Canvas user guide

This guide explains when and how to use the Data Ethics Canvas, whether for an organisation or sector, and which aspects of data practice to consider in the process.
Download the guide

We will continue to test and improve the Data Ethics Canvas in the months to come, and would welcome feedback and ideas. You can write to us at [email protected].