How Seattle Built an Economy of Service
In 2010, Seattle launched data.seattle.gov under the leadership of Chief Technology Officer, Bill Schrier, one of GovTech’s 25 “Doers, Dreamers, and Drivers” (2008) and a Computerworld Premier 100 Leader (2010). The website increased public access to high value, machine-readable datasets generated by various departments of Seattle’s City Government. A growing number of businesses and government agencies now use the website to create everyday products and services like the bike rack locator VeloRacks and the construction comparison tool Porch.com.
“Very early on, we understood the power of APIs to simplify access to data for web and mobile applications developers. Certainly data.seattle.gov offers a simple, easy, interactive online experience for Seattle’s residents and others, but where we really want to push the envelope is in API enabling our data. In fact by making our city data easily available via APIs, we widen potential access for residents and businesses and make it possible for them reuse our services in unprecedented ways.
We’re just at the beginning of a government transformation enabled by Open Data as a platform. With new, constrained, government budgets, we’re able to leverage a large community of people outside government to make government and the information it collects more accessible to everyone. ”
Bill Schrier, Seattle’s Chief Technology Officer