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The Open Knowledge Festival

MFG Archive

The Open Knowledge Foundation brings you up to speed with the largest open data festival in the world


A revolution in technology is happening and it’s changing everything we do; never before has so much data been collected and analysed and at the Open Knowledge Festival, we will bring together over 1,000 people from more than 60 countries to share their skills and experiences to ensure that the knowledge and insights derived from this data are open and publicly accessible to all. Taking place in Berlin, next week, from July 15th – 17th The OKFestival is the largest open knowledge event in the world and while organised by The Open Knowledge Foundation, the event is truly owned by the global open community.

At the root of all change lies passionate people with inspired ideas, but it can be challenging to translate ideas into actions. That is the vision for OKFestival 2014; we aim to translate “Open Minds to Open Action”. If we as a society are going to find solutions to our shared challenges – challenges such as climate change, income inequality and human rights abuses – it is imperative that everyone from citizens and scientists to entrepreneurs and activists have access to the information they need to shape the societies they want. However, in order to gain access to the wealth of information currently locked behind paywalls and hidden from the public, we need to come together to break down knowledge silos, share our experiences and build a cohesive, global open knowledge movement.

OKFestival will open each day with two inspirational keynote addresses; their talks will help set the tone for the day’s activities. We are honoured to be able to welcome Beatriz Busaniche, Patrick Alley, Neelie Kroes and Eric Hysen to the OKFestival stage. Each keynote was chosen to reflect one of the major themes discussed at OKFestival. Patrick Alley will talk to us about using hard evidence to fight corruption and Beatriz Busaniche will call on all of us to come to the defense of the public domain. Neelie Kroes will enlighten us about how we can better harness the power and potential of open data for the benefit of society and Eric Hysen will shed light on current research and discuss the key tenets of civic technology, which he believes can help us generate scale through the creation of a common framework. These issues are so important in today’s world, and if they’re on your radar, then OKFestival 2014 will be a great place for you to learn more, share your knowledge and meet incredible like-minded people.


The Open Knowledge Festival Audience

Our keynotes will inspire us, but the emphasis for rest of the festival will be on practical participation through our curated programme. We believe that Knowledge, Tools and Society act as the levers of real change and as such the OKFestival programme is organised around these three narrative streams:

Knowledge informs change and at OKFestival, experts in the fields of Open Science, Open Access, Data Journalism, Open Education, data training and more will lead us in unlocking, expanding and sharing knowledge.

Tools enable change and at OKFestival we will see how open source software, open hardware and open design can facilitate the flow of knowledge. We will build new tools, improve upon old ones and enjoy ourselves along the way!

Society effects change and at OKFestival we will learn about how openness has an impact on our society, how citizens are challenging inequality and holding governments and companies to account and how societal institutions can use open in more constructive, efficient ways.

At OKFestival, we are bringing people together from different sectors and different countries to collaboratively build the future of the open movement. The Open Knowledge Festival is an opportunity for attendees to listen, learn, brainstorm, make, hack and explore with peers, with friends and with collaborators. Over the course of the two and half days, we will collaboratively build the tools, solve the problems and form the partnerships necessary to ensure the future is one in which the world’s knowledge commons is open to everyone and a force for positive change.


Many thanks to The Open Knowledge Foundation for bringing their festival to our attention. With just one week to go, its not too late to buy tickets. If you are already planning on going, let us and the community know, below or on Twitter

Can’t wait for July 15th? Join the conversation on Twitter using the hashtag #OKFest2014 and keep us as Markets For Good posted with how the event is going.