Mayor Walsh Announces Launch of Syracuse Open Data Challenge

Published on October 04, 2023

Syracuse Mayor Ben Walsh announced the kickoff of the Syracuse Open Data Challenge, a month-long open data competition focused on City transportation data. Over the next month, participants can work with publicly available datasets in the Office of Analytics, Performance and Innovation’s Open Data Portal. The Challenge will culminate in the first-ever Syracuse Open Data Day on Nov. 4.

“In my 2023 State of the City address, I announced that we would prioritize the adoption of a Vision Zero program to improve traffic safety in the City of Syracuse,” said Mayor Walsh. “Whether talking about bikes, public transit, or motor vehicles, it is our hope that this civic-minded challenge will bring local data-oriented minds together to provide analysis, visualizations and web projects tied to understanding citizens’ experience with our transportation system.”

Open Data Day will be held Saturday, Nov. 4 from 10 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. at the Central Library, 447 S. Salina Street 13202. The free event will include presentations, breakout sessions teaching industry standard tools to access and visualize open data, and development sessions for participants to work on their datasets. Interested participants can go to the City’s Meetup page to register.

“API is excited to launch our first Open Data Day to celebrate and bring awareness to our nationally recognized Open Data program, which includes 103 different datasets of civic information,” said Chief Innovation and Data Officer Nicolas Diaz. “We are thrilled that community partners are joining us to lead six different break-out sessions of how to use open data and enable civic innovation using various tools.  It is our hope that community members will grow in their ability to use data and information to make better informed decisions for their neighborhoods and organizations and potentially develop their own tools and solutions leveraging open data.  A strong Open Data program creates a virtuous cycle where citizens are engaged in our civic data and transparency efforts and in turn demand more high-quality and timely datasets.”

To be an eligible data project submission, a data project must use at least one dataset from Open Data Syracuse, but contestants are welcome to use additional data sources as well. In addition to suggested City datasets, participants are welcome to find or create their own datasets as part of the challenge. Projects will be evaluated on four criteria: creativity, “wow” factor, execution and informational value. Submissions must be uploaded to the Open Data Syracuse DevPost site by Saturday, Nov. 4th, 2023 at 1:50 p.m.