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INSPIRE Community Forum

High Value Datasets

By INSPIRE Community Forum

imageMaking data available as “open data” across the EU Member States is vital to leverage their potential for the European society and economy. Under the PSI Directive, a magnitude of open data has been made available. The European Commission, EU Member States, and data providers at local and regional level put substantial effort in selecting, preparing, publishing, and promoting open data. To further increase the impact of open data, efforts should prioritise datasets that have the biggest potential for society and the economy, strategically targeting and improving availability, quality, and access for those selected datasets.

In this perspective, the Directive on Open data and the re-use of public sector information (Open Data Directive), into force since 16 July 2019, tasks the Commission to adopt implementing acts laying down a list of specific “high-value datasetsassociated with important benefits for society, the environment and the economy, held by public sector bodies and public undertakings.

The list should consider sectoral Union legal acts that regulate the publication of datasets, such as the INSPIRE Directive (2007/2/EC) and the Directive on the framework for the deployment of Intelligent Transport Systems  (2010/40/EU), to ensure that datasets are made available under corresponding standards and sets of metadata.

For the purpose of identifying such specific high-value datasets, the Commission shall carry out appropriate consultations, including at expert level, conduct an impact assessment and ensure complementarity with existing legal acts.


Highlights on High-value datasets from the Open Data Directive:


Definition of High-Value datasets (Article 2):

High-value datasets are documents the re-use of which is associated with important benefits for society, the environment and the economy, in particular because of their suitability for the creation of value-added services, applications and new, high-quality and decent jobs, and of the number of potential beneficiaries of the value-added services and applications based on those datasets


Characterization of high-value datasets and arrangements for publication and re-use (Article 14):

High-value datasets shall be:

(a) available free of charge, (b) machine readable; (c) provided via APIs; and (d) provided as a bulk download, where relevant.


The identification of specific high-value datasets shall be based on the assessment of their potential to:

(a) generate significant socioeconomic or environmental benefits and innovative services; (b) benefit a high number of users, in particular SMEs; (c) assist in generating revenues; and (d) be combined with other datasets.


List of thematic categories of high-value datasets (Annex I):

 1. Geospatial - 2. Earth observation and environment - 3. Meteorological - 4. Statistics - 5. Companies and company ownership - 6. Mobility.


Datasets defined under the Open Data Directive, have a clear overlap with the data scope of the INSPIRE Directive and could benefit from reusing already available spatial data in the INSPIRE infrastructure.

The definition of a specific list of High-value datasets, similar to the list of Priority datasets for the e-Reporting, isn’t however a trivial task : the value of datasets depends on several factors, the perceptions and expectations of the stakeholders are quite different, as well as the specification of common quality criteria (for example, the use of standard formats, the lack of errors, and the frequency of updates).



 Useful Links 

Legal basis: Directive on Open data and the re-use of public sector information (Open Data Directive)

Interesting page from the Commission's website:  European legislation on open data and the re-use of public sector information  

High-value datasets page in the European Data Portal: A sneak peek into the European Data Portal's latest study into high-value datasets

European Data Portal Analytical Report: High-value datasets: understanding the perspective of data providers.

Insights from the INSPIRE Virtual Conference 2020: A European Strategy for Data High-value datasets , European Data Portal Workshop on High Value Datasets: What are the lessons learned from INSPIRE?