For a country that wasn’t even ranked in 2013, a ranking of 41st (out of 86 countries surveyed) certainly comes as a surprise. Open Data Institute’s Open Data Barometer can be found here. Just click on the country to see its ranking. You can also download the full report there. Malaysia has been categorized as “One-sided initiatives”.
These countries each have some form of open data initiative, ranging from departmental web pages that display open data, to full open data portals. However, government action to publish selected datasets is not matched by civil society capacity and freedom to engage with the data, nor by private sector involvement in the open data process. As a result, these initiatives appear to be very supply-side driven, without engagement with a broad community of users. Without wider political freedoms, the potential of open data to bring about political and social change in these contexts will be limited. The countries in this cluster, in ODB rank order, are: Malaysia, Kazakhstan, United Arab Emirates, Saudi Arabia, Bahrain and Qatar.
Should we be happy about our ranking? Obviously not. There are still a lot of work to be done in order to open data that the citizens need. Malaysia’s open data repository, data.gov.my, only has 117 datasets, most of which are in PDF format.
As a comparison, Singapore is ranked 29th and Indonesia is ranked 36th.