In 2011, the Kenyan government launched the Kenya Open data project. The Open data project was meant to release important data to the public domain. Most of the data was previously accessible to the government and its departments for use in planning, resource allocation and other tasks for the running of government.
Despite launching in high gear, the uptake of the project was slow. Some of the successes from the Open data projects include initiatives by media houses and civil society organizations developing an online portal that visualized data on the 2013 elections, urban crime, education and health information. At one point, the opendata.go.ke domain expired only to be renewed later.
Keen on reviving the project, the Kenya ICT Authority re-launched the Kenya Open data portal in July 2015 offering a robust, user-friendly and intuitive Open Data portal. The Open Data portal was part of the measures taken in actualizing clauses of the data protection bill, that is part of the ‘Connected Kenya Master Plan (2012-2017)’, seeking to make Kenya a competitive knowledge-based economy with ICT business development as the core.
According to the Kenya ICT Authority, the portal has witnessed increased number of page views to 58million from 44million since the re-launch. In addition, the number of datasets have increased to 744 from 680 during the same period. The number of Government Ministries giving their data to the Kenya Open Data portal (KODI), has risen to 31 from 4 during inception in 2011 with counties also keen to share their data through the portal. Some of the institutions that have shared their data include Agriculture Fisheries and Food Authority, National Transport and Safety Authority, Kiambu County and Kenya National Audit Office.