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Municipal data as a driving force for commercial business development

Partnerships for the Goals
Sustainable Cities and Communities
Industry, Innovation, and Infrastructure
10 ETC

About Stavanger municipality

 Stavanger municipality is part of a smart city network with both international and national consortiums. The ambition is to improve, change and develop the municipality, it’s practice and role, by exploring new ideas, disrupting the established and testing alternatives.
The three key drivers for the Smart City department is ‘technology’, ‘cooperation’ and ‘citizen involvement’. Open data targets all the key drivers, and then some, it also targets our focus areas ‘health & welfare’, ‘education & knowledge’, ‘energy, climate & environment’, ‘urban art’ and ‘governance & democracy’. As you can see, open data has the potential of contributing to our society in many ways; the sky is the limit.

The overarching goal of distributing open data is to make the public office more transparent, to facilitate for new businesses, and promote entrepreneurship. This assignment challenges the students to figure out how we can make our open data even more appealing and accessible, in addition, to find the missing ingredient for increased use.


Thanks to a half-century-long, successful oil and gas history, the Norwegian economy and welfare system has been thriving. The oil and gas industry which has provided us with a strong economy is the industry that our region is most dependant on; we need more “legs” to stand on. Based on an expected reduction of our natural resources, and therefore a change in the economic structure, we ask the question of how the future of our society looks like. Are we able to obtain today’s level of welfare? What do we value the most, and how should we secure it? How will the data economy develop? How can successful pilots scale up? There is a need to explore and investigate the sphere of open municipal data and how they can provide the basis for commercial actors, in addition to making open municipal data more attractive.

Even though open data contains a diverse and intertwined collection of datasets, perhaps because of the diversity, we struggle to facilitate for commercial applications and endeavors. The existing collection of data might or might not be enough for commercial application, which is what the Smart City department seeks to facilitate for, along with increasing transparency and democracy. We want to challenge students to start with the published open data of Stavanger municipality and see how our data, along with those of other municipalities, can make the basis for commercial products developed by commercial actors. The completed assignment should provide an analysis of what kind of municipal data is most suited for commercial success and how the municipality can communicate and facilitate for such data. The analysis should contain existing open data, and the kind of data municipalities should publish and make available for commercial actors. Include notable aspects of data, if possible, such as type, source, collection method, format, quality, standards, means of distribution, and best practices. The assignment should conclude with a business model for new and existing commercial actors using open municipal data.

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