Open Data for Business Tool Report

The Open Data for Business (OD4B) Tool is a methodology to assess the private sector’s current and potential use of government data in various countries. It is designed to increase the business use of government data through (1) increased private sector awareness of government data, (2) identification of high-value data and barriers to use, and (3) a recommended Action Plan to engage with private sector stakeholders on an ongoing basis.

This report presents initial findings from data collected in May 2016 in Kingston, Jamaica. It includes data collected through interviews, questionnaire responses, roundtable discussions, and insights from the Local Partner. The information collected has been aggregated and analyzed across four assessment areas – high value data, barriers, capabilities, and engagement. Each section of this document demonstrates both the spectrum of responses and overall trends.

Overall, there is a high level of demand for government data from established businesses. The business register, demographics data, and economic statistics were the most highly requested types of government data by participants. Critical barriers to the private sector use of government data included inability to find relevant data, lack of disaggregated data, and lack of timeliness of data.


These initial findings (summarized in the following table) are based on a limited sample (22) of primarily established financial and data/IT companies. In the coming months, additional companies will be interviewed to increase the sample size of the data to provide a more representative assessment of the private sector’s demand for government data. This report outlines preliminary findings based on data collected through the Open Data Roundtable and survey responses from participants.


  • Sectors: 8 (Agriculture, Business & Legal Services, Data/Information Technology, Education, Finance/Investment, Governance, Tourism)
  • Interviews: 2
  • Roundtable attendees: 20
  • Types of participating organizations: 7

Summary of Key Findings

High Value Data
  • Government Data - Greatest interest for demographics, business, economics
  • Data Use - Research, new products/services, and identification of new customers

  • Technical Infrastructure Available - 3.2/5*
  • Data Literacy and Skills - 3.3/5*
  • Capability of Greatest Interest - Hiring technical staff
  • Awareness of Government Data Resources - 2.8/5*

  • Most Significant Barriers - Data not up to date, difficulty finding, formats
  • Impact on Businesses - Inability to scale, inability to effectively budget and forecast, major cost inefficiencies.

  • Level of Government Responsiveness to Data Requests - 2.17/5*
  • Most Effective Outreach and Feedback Channels - Workshops/Roundtables, Email, Hackathons

*Average on a 1 (low) - 5 (high) scale