[Wg-economics-advisory] Notes from the first conference call of the Open Economics Advisory Panel

Bronwyn Hall bhhall at econ.berkeley.edu
Thu Mar 29 07:40:23 UTC 2012

Dear Rufus, Velichka, et al.,

I am sorry I was not able to join the working group phone conference 
- the phone system at Bocconi defeated me, I was unable to enter the 
code correctly.

Thanks for the summary of the meeting, and here are a few comments:

1. I endorse the suggestions of David Levine for additional board 
members, they are excellent.

2. My concern as an open data provider is the cost of being a 
provider, in terms of documentation, formatting, handling inquiries, 
etc., especially in an ongoing manner. Granting agencies rarely want 
to support these kinds of activities (even when they claim to, peer 
review generally does not value them). Also, I wonder how our efforts 
would fit into those already ongoing - various journals' archives, 
and the ICPSR data center. See


I will hope to be able to participate in the first workshop,


At 05:42 PM 3/23/2012 +0800, hbrunner at adb.org wrote:
>Thanks Ms Dimitrova for this quick summary. I was happy to join the 
>call, at least for a period of it. Unfortunately, I didn't get 
>properly connected on fixed line through the Asian Development Bank 
>communications net (as the time between 1am and 2 am HongKong time 
>is a bit outside office hours for our switchboard), and then I ended 
>up on connecting on my mobile, where the sound of the conversation 
>was a bit uneven, and I appreciate this summary. Next week, Europe 
>moves '1 hour closer to HK time because of summer' -- and possible 
>next time a conference call could be set-up at 16.00GMT, then I can 
>connect more successfully at a more civil hour (11pm).
>Just to add a few points to pieces of information I did get:
>## What should be the Focus
>There are organizations, like ADB, or the World Bank, that gather 
>and access huge amounts of economic data (and most of it goes to 
>waste). And we also work with people, and hire them on and off, to 
>maintain data bases and work on them, also for reasons of policy 
>making. This should be a main focus.
>Crowd-sourcing of data seems to me to be an important area of discussion.
>Recently, I sent to Rufus a proposal on setting up a 'scoping 
>workshop' for a project to develop economic geography model 
>applications (and the pilot model is already up and running with 
>me), based on open knowledge access. This could be discussed further.
>As to workshops, there was a discussion on the timing of a Cambridge 
>Workshop -- the idea of having it around the time of AEA meeting is 
>worth pursuing. May/June is not so good, and too early.
>Hans-Peter Brunner
>Hans-Peter Brunner
>Senior Economist, South Asia
>Asian Development Bank
>Tel  (632) 632 4159
>Fax (632) 636 2337
>From: Velichka Dimitrova <velichka.dimitrova at okfn.org>
>To: wg-economics-advisory at lists.okfn.org
>Date: 03/23/2012 03:00 AM
>Subject: [Wg-economics-advisory] Notes from the first conference 
>call of the        Open Economics Advisory Panel
>Sent by: wg-economics-advisory-bounces at lists.okfn.org
>Dear all,
>Thank you very much for taking the time to join the first conference 
>call of the Open Economics Advisory Panel, we appreciate your 
>comments and input and we hope that has been a useful exchange for 
>you as well. We will try to improve the structure of these calls 
>according to the feedback we received. The notes of the conference 
>call are summarised here:
>## Agenda
>    * Introduction to the Working Group
>    * Topics for the Working Group to focus on (including specific 
> fields in economics and and other potential activities)
>    * Academic workshop (planned for ~ Summer 2012). Precise date, 
> topics and suggestions for speakers and people to invite
>    * People to invite to the Advisory Panel
># Participants
>David Levine
>Albert Bravo-Biosca
>Josh Lerner
>Hans-Peter Brunner (joined later)
>Rufus Pollock
>Velichka Dimitrova
>Bronwyn Hall (could not join because of dial-in problems)
>Lionel Bently (apologies for not being able to join)
>David Newbery (apologies for not being able to join)
>Tariq Khokhar (apologies for not being able to join)
>## Activity of the Working Group
>    * Improving information sharing and utilization within economics 
> both within academia and more broadly. More details at 
> <http://openeconomics.net/>http://openeconomics.net/
>    * Concretely: two workshops, building a community, some mini-projects
>## What should be the Focus
>3 main areas:
>    * Economists to open up data
>    * Other people to open up data that economists could use
>    * Role that open data and content can play in broadening 
> participation outside of pure academia
>Greater weight on first two than the third.
>## Suggestions for Additional Members of Working Group Advisory Panel
>Introductions from David Levine (*)
>* Christian Zimmermann
>* John Rust - software for journals 
><<mailto:jrust at gemini.econ.umd.edu>jrust at gemini.econ.umd.edu> (*)
>* Economics at NSF, Matthew Lutz (*)
>* Shane Greenstein at NBER and digitization project (Josh Lerner)
>General suggest to contact journals:  Econometric Society, AEA ...
>If you have any additional suggestions for people to invite as 
>Advisory Panel members, please let us know.
>Could you possibly write an introduction e-mail cc-ing us?
>## Open Datasets
>In addition to openness
>    * Easy accessibility
>    * Permanence (Providers disappear) (Institution along the lines 
> of RePEC?)
>    * Formatting and Standardisation
>    * Programming issues (making data conversion easy or doing the 
> data conversion directly
>    * Reproducability and Validation
>Is data available -- what's the situation? Should we do research here?
>Crowd-sourcing data collection about existing papers (to students) 
>once format is there
>Journals and data archiving
>    * Enlist archives participation
>    * Likely support archiving and data conversion
>    * Greater benefit for the journals?
>    * Circulate poll for timing of workshop
>    * Follow up on Advisory Panel suggestions
>    * Circulate workshop outline proposal
>If you mind any issues missing in the summary and would like to add 
>something, please do so.
>Velichka Dimitrova
>Open Economics Working Group Coordinator
>Open Knowledge Foundation
>Dr Rufus Pollock
>Co-Founder and Board Member, Open Knowledge Foundation
>Centre for Intellectual Property and Information Law, University of Cambridge
>Wg-economics-advisory mailing list
>Wg-economics-advisory at lists.okfn.org
>Wg-economics-advisory mailing list
>Wg-economics-advisory at lists.okfn.org
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