• Written by Mark Charmer
    12 May 2011

We’ve had so many interesting conversations today at the Open Data for Development Camp event in Amsterdam that it’s hard to know where to start blogging about it.

Photo: The Open Data for Development Camp was held at the Royal Institute for the Tropics, in Amsterdam. Which is pretty spectacular in its own right.

Some 130 people attended today, and we still have tomorrow to enjoy too. This morning, Peter van der Linde had the chance to open the event by presenting Akvo’s IATI (International Aid Transparency Initiative) pilot with the Dutch Foreign Ministry. This has seen us bring half a billion Euro of its water and sanitation project portfolio online in a test environment (yes you read that figure right). We’ll cover about this in more depth soon, but there’s a short blog about it over on the Open for Change site already. Open for Change, of which we’re a founder member, was behind the event, backed by Partos.

A highlight for me up to now has been meeting the three-man team who’ve come along from The World Bank in Washington DC. The message they’ve sent is really encouraging – a desire to develop partnerships with a new generation of problem-solvers working with software, data and projects.

90% of the world’s population now have access to mobile phones, social media and geocoding and mapping and according to The World Bank’s Edward Anderson these three factors are “game changers”. For more on this and discussion about the bank’s potential future role with developers, see this short video interview I did with Edward, immediately after his presentation to the audience.

For a few other samples of my day, here’s me chatting with Arjen Mulder of War Child. I also interviewed Pieter Dorst, head of the Aid Effectiveness Bureau at the Dutch Ministry of Foreign Affairs. His team backed the event and helped make it happen.

If you want a full flavour of what was discussed today by whom, there’s no better way than to take a look at the #oddc Twitter hashtag stream.

Mark Charmer is a co-founder of Akvo.

Updated 13 May: Clarified that it was a half billion Euro portion of the Dutch water sector portfolio that we brought online – the total Dutch water sector portfolio is larger (at around 2 billion Euro).