Roundtable on “The Importance of Data Archiving and Open Data in Social Science”

On 15 of February 2017 in Prishtina, Centre for Political Courage (CPC), as one of the partners within the project “South Eastern European Data Services” (SEEDS), held a roundtable on “The Importance of Data Archiving and Open Data in Social Science”.

This roundtable aimed at presenting the initiative to establish a “Kosovo Social Sciences Data Center”, networking and promoting the open data and data archiving. SEEDS is a Swiss-funded project aimed at helping to establish new data services in social sciences in Albania, Croatia, Kosovo, Macedonia, Montenegro and in Serbia.

At the roundtable took part 23 participants coming from diverse institutions, including representatives from the University of Prishtina, Ministry of Education, Science and Technology, National Agency of Statistics, Think-Tanks, as well as freelance researchers and civil society representatives.

Prof. Arben Hajrullahu from the Department of Political Science at the Faculty of Philosophy in Prishtina opened the conference by presenting the SEEDS project, its purpose and aim, as well as what has been achieved so far within this project. Moreover, Prof. Hajrullahu highlighted the importance of open data and its importance for the academic and researcher’s communities.

Ms. Marijana Glavica from the Faculty of Humanities and Social Sciences in Zagreb, presented the process of establishment of national data services for the social sciences, emphasizing the lessons learned from previous and current projects such as SERSCIDA and SEEDS, and also the up coming project of CEESDA SaW. Ms. Glavica mentioned as lessons learned from the Croatian case the importance of networking and expressing continuous interests, since the establishment of social data archive it’s a very long process and it requires synergies with as much stakeholders as possible.

Mr. Georges Labreche from Open Data Kosovo presented some of the most successful projects. He shared his experience in working in this field and mentioned that in general there is a lack of knowledge and precise understanding what open data really is.Mr. Shkumbin Brestovci from Prishtina Hackerspace focused on the role and importance of open sources, authors rights, and on the impact of data in the policy making process.

A vivid debate among all participants closed the roundtable where final remarks were drawn by several questions, comments and suggestions. At the roundtable it was concluded that in Kosovo is needed more cooperation with other Western- Balkan and European countries in order to institutionalize a data archive in the years to come, which would definitely increase the level and quality of scientific research.