Projectskeyboard_arrow_rightData Responsibility

Data Responsibility

How can privately held data be shared responsibly for social good through cross sector collaboration?

Project Websitelink
    Governance Area
  • National Governance Regional Governance Municipal Governance Global Governance
  • Institution Type
  • Corporate/Business International Organizations Government Public Sector
  • Innovative Capability
  • Expert Networks Data Collaboratives Collective Intelligence Open Data
  • Product Category
  • Strategy Data sets Platform Event/workshop Website


There are many predictable, repeatable uses for uses for privately held corporate data to serve public good. However, the processes to access and effectively use such data remains almost completely ad-hoc. Establishing “data collaboratives” and leveraging privately-held data for evidence based policy making is onerous, generally one-off, not informed by best practices or any shared knowledge base.




Hewlett Foundation


The program seeks to develop methodologies, tools and frameworks to share data responsibility and systematically - leveraging existing insights and assessments - so that a decrease in the transaction cost, time and energy can be established for data collaboratives between private and public sectors. There are three core pillars of data responsibility:

  • Duty to Share: Corporations must act on this need and recognize the potential value of data in order to help improve people’s lives.
  • Duty to Protect: if precautions aren’t taken, sharing data can be more harmful than beneficial. Oftentimes, people are worried about data-sharing for such reasons; but what makes data protection more complex is data application in different contexts. The issue is much larger than privacy at the point of sharing -- we must be concerned about mitigating risks across the data life cycle: collection stage, processing stage, sharing stage, analyzing stage, and the using stage.
  • The Duty to Act: there are often many projects occurring simultaneously that release new insights, and yet, too often they are not acted upon. To leverage this untapped value, we need a new framework for data responsibility that’s comprised of these three core pillars -- otherwise, we run the risk of losing data assets that serve public good.
  • Team

    Stefaan Verhulst

    Andrew Young

    Alexandra Shaw