The Global Open Data for Agriculture and Nutrition (GODAN) initiative seeks to support global efforts to make agricultural and nutritionally relevant data available, accessible, and usable for unrestricted use worldwide. The initiative focuses on building high-level policy, and public and private institutional support for open data.

The initiative encourages co-operation among existing agriculture and open data activities, bringing stakeholders together to solve long-standing global problems. On a practical level, GODAN lends its expertise to advising on open data policy and funding proposals and, where appropriate, submitting joint proposals with members and partners. GODAN is in a position to use its credibility and expertise to support initiatives that aim to make positive impact in the fields of agriculture and nutrition through the use of open data, helping advise on applications, assembling partner network technical, policy and legal expertise, and acting as a facilitator.

Open access to research, and open publication of data, are vital resources for food security and nutrition; driven by farmers, farmer organisations, researchers, experts, policy makers, governments, and other private sector and civil society stakeholders participating in "innovation systems" and along value chains. Lack of institutional, national, and international policies and openness of data limit the effectiveness of agricultural and nutritional limiting research potential and slowing the introduction of innovations in to the market.

Making open data work for agriculture and nutrition requires a shared agenda to increase the supply, quality, and interoperability of data, alongside action to build capacity for the use of data by all stakeholders.

The GODAN initiative is a voluntary alliance of partners brought together around a shared purpose. The initiative welcomes all those who share this purpose to join as partners and to participate in shaping co-ordinated activities that can deliver on the potential of open data for agriculture and nutrition. Together, GODAN partners seek to support this initiative through a set of guidelines and principles of open data and open access. The initiative seeks to:

  • Guide and assist both private and public sector bodies on open data and open access policy, balancing the obvious benefits of open data with legitimate concerns in relation to privacy, security, community rights and commercial interests;

  • Advocate for the release and re-usability of data in support of Innovation and Economic Growth, Improved Service Delivery and Effective Governance, and Improved Environmental and Social Outcomes;

  • Provide and link partners with the relevant technical expertise required to build and develop their own proposals, action plans and milestones. Where appropriate, GODAN can provide expertise and guidance through entire projects, from proposal to delivery.
  • With a focus on open data for agriculture and nutrition, the initiative seeks to:

  • Enable new and existing open data initiatives to set a core focus on agriculture and nutrition data;

  • Encourage the agreement on and release of a common set of agricultural and nutrition data;

  • Increase widespread awareness of ongoing activities, innovations, and good practices within the field;

  • Advocate for collaborative efforts on future agriculture and nutrition open data endeavours, and;

  • Build and facilitate the building of programmes, good practices, and lessons learned that enable the use of open data particularly by and for the rural and urban poor.

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