#FunDataFriday - Data.Gov


Data.gov is an open government data site. It aims to make federal, state, local and tribal government information, freely available to the public. It has over 230K public datasets covering a wide range of topics from agriculture, education, public safety and much more.



I could go on for days about why this is an awesome resource, but this is supposed to be a 3 minute scroll so I will discuss a few below:


It is a great resource for analysis

People are often unsure of how to get started with their own analysis. Take an early step by using going the data science concepts from a published tutorial on a new dataset from Data.gov

The data belongs to the people

As I had touched on in a previous post, I firmly believe that government data should be made available to the public wherever possible. This data was paid for by the public and it needs to be available to the public.

Any facility that comes from public funding is supposed to have a publicly accessible archive.  These are YOUR data!
— Dr. Luisa Rebull

Visibility into (a subset) of what the government is collecting

This website gives us a small window into which data the government is collecting. Brooke Watson made an excellent point during her presentation at RStudio Conference 2019 where she discussed her work with the ACLU using data science to help reunite immigrant families

The data that we collect represents what we value
— Brooke Watson

To this point, I’ve been pleasantly surprised at some of the data that was collected. For example, I have previously explored a dataset from the city of Toronto which shows the output of a 2017 senior citizen survey to identify various needs of Toronto's seniors' population. I have also performed some analysis on the Austin Imagine dataset. This dataset provides the yearly key indicator measures of Austin’s performance against 8 priority programs to improve the overall health and vitality of the city and it’s citizens.


Get started by browsing the website, downloading a data set that you are interested in and start analyzing!