This discussion paper outlines how open data is boosting innovation in
agricultural and nutritional business and service models; explains how
open data promotes transparency across the sector to accelerate
progress, identify areas for improvement and help create new insights;
and finally suggests how this important progress can continue to scale.
Fourteen use cases show how open data can have impact in different
stages of agriculture, food production and consumption and help to solve
problems for a range of stakeholders, from smallholder farmers to
agribusinesses. From managing scarce water resources during the
California drought or enabling farmers in Africa to estimate the
outbreak of animal diseases, to helping consumers avoid harmful
allergens in their food, open data is becoming a valuable tool for
policy-makers, industry, small-scale farmers and consumers alike.
There are still challenges related to data management, licensing,
interoperability and exploitation, and thus a need to evolve policies,
practices and ethics around closed, shared, and open data, but there are
also huge opportunities coming from the emerging global data
infrastructure. With innovative business models and international
political will, investment now in open-data-driven initiatives in
agriculture and nutrition offers solutions to major real-world problems.
This paper seeks to stimulate discussion about the potential uses, needs
and challenges of people, organisations and governments interested in
exploring open data within this field.
Carolan, L.; Smith, F.; Protonotarios, V.; Schaap, B.; Broad, E.; Hardinges, J.; Gerry, W. How can we improve agriculture, food and nutrition with open data? Open Data Institute, London, UK (2015) 34 pp.