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Open and linked data

What is open data?

Open data is all about 'opening up' non-personal data held by the government and making it freely available to you.

This idea is underpinned by the philosophy that data generated or collected by organisations in the public sector should belong to the taxpayers, wherever financially feasible and where releasing it won’t violate any laws or rights to privacy (either for citizens or government staff).

Open data is information that:

  • is free to use for any legal purpose under the Open Government Licence
  • contains no personal data and meets Data Protection Act legislation
  • is published in a form that makes it easy to manipulate in software like mobile apps.

A list of bus stops, details of train timetables or information about healthcare providers in your area are examples of open data.

When the data is structured in a certain way, enabling it to be combined with other data to create something new, it becomes known as linked data. For example, combining a list of bus stops with postcode data to create a map of bus stops near your home.

The aim of open and linked data is to allow you to view information, and re-use it in useful ways which can help increase access to public services for everyone.

Our open data

Our catalogue of open data sets is available.

If there is a data set not in the list, that you would like us to consider making available, please email

Other sources of open data

Find open data has open information about Northern Ireland including:

  • employment surveys
  • hospital waiting lists
  • births, deaths and marriages statistics.

Northern Ireland Statistics and Research Agency also have datasets covering:

  • crime and justice
  • population and migration
  • labour market.
For more information about open data in Northern Ireland, visit OpenData NI