Tag Archives: event

Open Data Day 2022: March 5th

Open Data Day will take place on March 5, 2022. The day is organized annually by the Open Knowledge Foundation to promote Open Data around the world. It was created as an opportunity to emphasize the benefits of Open Data and encourage the adoption of Open Data policies in government, business and civil society. 

What is Open Data? According to the Open Data Handbook by the Open Knowledge Foundation, Open Data “…is data that can be freely used, re-used and redistributed by anyone – subject only, at most, to the requirement to attribute and sharealike”.  The Canadian government’s definition adds the aspects of structure and machine-readability: “Open data is defined as structured data that is machine-readable, freely shared, used and built on without restrictions.”

Open Data Padlock Lock - Free vector graphic on Pixabay

What are possible benefits of Open Data? First and foremost, the concept of Open Data is an integral part of the Open Scholarship ecosystem. Research data that is openly accessible contributes to innovation, transparency and reproducibility in science. But the benefits of Open Data are not limited to academia. Similarly, public administration information, if made freely accessible in compliance with open standards, is contributing to a more transparent and accountable governance and thus to a potentially more equitable society. And ultimately, it is open data generated in citizen science projects that feeds back into both academic and societal discourse.

What are Indigenous perspectives on Open Data? It must be understood that the ideas behind Open Data are not equally beneficial and relevant for all communities. The needs of Indigenous Peoples for autonomy and control over Indigenous data and data related to Indigenous Knowledges, as reflected in the CARE Principles for Indigenous Data Governance, may be opposed to the principles of Open Data. It is the responsibility of the global Open Scholarship community to respectfully acknowledge that fact and attempt to reconcile these principles in collaboration with Indigenous Peoples and Indigenous Data sovereignty advocates. To learn more about the history and principles of Indigenous Data sovereignty, particularly in the lands now known as Canada, see the First Nations Principles of OCAP and chapter 9 of the Tri-Council Policy Statement: Ethical Conduct for Research Involving Humans (TCPS2 2018) on Research Involving the First Nations, Inuit and Métis Peoples of Canada.

Which sources for Open Data do exist? There are numerous initiatives and resources around Open Data in academic research, citizen science, and public administration. For example, the ongoing COVID-19 Canada Open Data Working Group is curating an extensive dataset on COVID-19 in Canada. A large amount of geographic data is freely available in OpenStreetMap. A growing number of governing bodies is providing demographic and other statistical data.  And libraries, archives, and museums provide digitizations of their collections as well as metadata and also feed them into projects such as Wikidata, or the Internet Archive, bringing the concept of Linked Open Data to life.

Open Data – what role does it play in the UVic community? A wide range of stakeholders at University of Victoria are contributing to and making use of Open Data. UVic Libraries invites faculty, researchers, and students to deposit their scholarly data into UVic Dataverse, an institutional research data repository. The depositors are encouraged to make the data open, because the repository is an ideal environment for Open Data.
The Libraries also maintain several Libguides that address Open Data discovery, including on research, health and government data, business data, and geospatial data, as well as discipline specific guides.
Research projects like the Ocean Networks Canada are inviting scholars and the public to access their data, while explicitly committing to Canadian Open Data principles.
Other projects at UVic that touch on the topic of Open Data include the Electronic Textual Cultures Lab (ECTL), which curates an overview on the topic and hosts the Open Scholarship Policy Observatory, that – among others – lists Open Data policies.  

Web of Performance book launch (New Zealand)

Author Monica Prendergast speaks to a crowd at the launch of her book, Web of Performance.Last month, Monica Prendergast attended the International Drama in Education Research Institute at the University of Auckland, New Zealand and launched the recently released Web of Performance: An Ensemble Workbook.

The curriculum guide in performance studies, edited with Will Weigler, is intended for students ages 16-20. The workbook uses examples of theatrical performances to help show students and educators the ways in which theatre can make positive impacts on a community.

The project was funded by an SSHRC grant, with additional funding from the Office of Research Services.

“I’m so grateful to Inba Kehoe and her staff in the UVIC ePublishing program,” says Prendergast.

Web of Performance is available for download here: http://dspace.library.uvic.ca/handle/1828/9426.

UVic Author Celebration Feature: The Right Relationship

The annual UVic Author Celebration is happening TODAY as part of Ideafest. Join us as we celebrate books written by UVic authors, including an engaging panel discussion on issues facing First Nations communities.

When: (Today) March 8, 2018
Where: University Bookstore
Time: 3:00-4:30pm

The author panel includes: John Borrows (Law), Michele Tanaka (Education), Paul Whitinui (Education), and Wanosts’a7 Lorna Williams (Education). Rebecca Johnson (Indigenous Law Research Unit) will moderate.

This week, we will highlight the books written by members of the author panel.

The Right Relationship by edited by John Borrows and Michael Coyle was released last year by University of Toronto Press.

About the Book

In The Right Relationship, John Borrows and Michael Coyle bring together a group of renowned scholars, both indigenous and non-indigenous, to cast light on the magnitude of the challenges Canadians face in seeking a consensus on the nature of treaty partnership in the twenty-first century. The diverse perspectives offered in this volume examine how Indigenous people’s own legal and policy frameworks can be used to develop healthier attitudes between First Peoples and settler governments in Canada. While considering the existing law of Aboriginal and treaty rights, the contributors imagine what these relationships might look like if those involved pursued our highest aspirations as Canadians and Indigenous peoples. This timely and authoritative volume provides answers that will help pave the way toward good governance for all.

About the Editors

John Borrows is the Canada Research Chair in Indigenous Law in the Faculty of Law at the University of Victoria. He teaches in the area of Constitutional Law, Indigenous Law, and Environmental Law. In addition to teaching generations of students at his home base in UVic’s law school, he has served as visiting professor in the US, Australia and New Zealand. As a global leader in Indigenous law, Borrows’ ideas helped shape the recommendations of both the Truth and Reconciliation Commission of Canada and the Royal Commission on Aboriginal Peoples. He has led engagement with Indigenous legal traditions in Canada and internationally, bringing to light some of the injustices, inequalities and conditions of Indigenous people. His scholarship has been cited by the Supreme Court of Canada. Recently, he was named the 2017 Killam Prize winner in Social Sciences by the Canada Council for the Arts. Borrows is Anishinabe/Ojibway and a member of the Chippewa of the Nawash First Nation in Ontario, Canada.

Michael Coyle is an associate professor and Director of Graduate Programs in the Faculty of Law at Western University. He has over twenty-five years of experience in mediating disputes between the Crown and First Nations.

Praise for the Book

“This book presents an innovative argument on understanding and implementing treaties… Contributors are innovative in the way they conceive of alternatives that respect traditions and legal structures of Indigenous nations and government.” (E. Acevedo, Choice Magazine vol 55:04:2017)

“The Right Relationship, goes well beyond a capsule summary of the issues related to the interpretation and implementation of historical treaties. This wide-reaching collection of essays represents leading-edge scholarship on the central issue of how we, in modern Canada, can give life and voice to historical treaties in a manner that can be justified by law, philosophy, and moral reasoning. This volume is a serious contribution to the study of Indigenous–settler relations.” (Douglas Sanderson, Faculty of Law, University of Toronto)

Also by John Borrows

Freedom and Indigenous Constitutionalism (2016, University of Toronto Press) celebrates the emancipatory potential of Indigenous traditions, considers their value as the basis for good laws and good lives, and critiques the failure of Canadian constitutional traditions to recognize their significance.

Event: The Alchemy of Astonishment book launch (Vancouver)

For those on the mainland, don’t miss your chance to attend a book launch for Will Weigler’s recent release, “The Alchemy of Astonishment,” presented by Simon Fraser University’s Vancity Office of Community Engagement.


Tuesday, May 30, 2017
7:00 to 9:00 PM

Djavad Mowafachian World Art Centre
Goldcorp Centre for the Arts
149 W. Hastings St.

This event is FREE to attend and requires no prior registration.

See our previous post to find out more about Will and his book.