Opening Up (OUP)
Opening Up


The Opening Up project opened up new opportunities for businesses and governments to develop transformative services through the adoption of open data and social networking approaches.

It built upon the increasingly large amounts of valuable data created by the development of social networks as part of the shift towards open government to create new tools, devise new approaches and build the skills citizens, businesses and governments need to deliver radically different services, e-government and businesses in the North Sea Region.

Through this work, the project promoted significant new ways of developing, adopting and using ICT applications across the North Sea Region.

01/10/2011 - 30/09/2014
1 - Building on our Capacity for Innovation
Area of Intervention
1.4 Promoting the adoption and use of ICT applications
ERDF Grant
1,632,500.00 €
ERDF Equivalent
218,363.00 €
Total Eligible Budget
3,701,725.00 €
Lead Beneficiary
Intercommunale Leiedal, Belgium
Filip Meuris
Tel: +32 5624 1616
Project Homepage
Beneficiaries per Country
The Netherlands
Dutch Police Region Groningen
Gemeente Groningen
Hanze University Groningen
Intercommunale Leiedal
Lessius Mechelen vzw
Høje-Taastrup Municipality
Karlstads Kommun
Municipality of Kristiansand
United Kingdom
Porism Ltd
Background and Aim

The Opening Up project provided a strong single point of focus spanning the North Sea Region in order to consider the various problems and challenges raised by the emergence of social media and open data that are being faced by governments, municipalities, businesses and citizens across the region.

Opening Up acted as a booster project, supporting innovation across the region and using the project’s pilots, outputs, research, tools and training together to provide a ‘step change’ in service design and delivery across the region and across the public and private sector.


New forms of social media – blogs, social networks, chat sites etc. – have become an established part of our daily lives. 80% of young (16-24) internet users and 40% of those aged 25-54 in the EU27 are already actively using some form of social media. By promoting dialogue and combining technology and interaction they have become extremely valuable networks for citizens and consumers.

At the same time that channels and platforms are opening up between citizens, businesses and governments, there is an increasing move toward the opening up of information, primarily through the formal and informal release of large datasets (e.g. by in the US, in the UK and in the Netherlands). This ‘open data’ movement offers both new opportunities and new challenges for citizens, businesses and governments, including the need to develop the skills to work with this material and to make the provision of ‘open data’ more evidence-based and demand-driven.

  • Several pilots on the use of social media and open data
  • Accredited training on social media
  • Development of a standardised “Social Media Readiness Indicator” (extension of the Smart Cities e-Government Readiness Index)
  • Policy recommendations for using Social Media in a governmental context
  • Tools and techniques to facilitate the use of open data and the integration of social media 
  • Websites and applications demonstrating the possibilities related to the use of open data and citizen-led services
  • Standards for exchanging government data across borders
  • Studies on the skills needed, challenges and opportunities related to social media
Project News
Final Conference
Dates: 02/12/2014 - 03/12/2014

Team picture

Open Data Charter

Signing of open data charter

Opening Up final conference

Live visual harvesting at conference

Conference speech

Event Calendar
Events Archive