Drawing Up a New Legal Ecosystem for Open Data to Improve Citizen Participation and Collaboration


  • William Gilles Université Paris 1 Panthéon-Sorbonne
  • Irène Bouhadana Université Paris 1 Panthéon-Sorbonne


[extract] It may seem straightaway paradoxical to deal with the legal framework of the public data reuse in a research work analyzing citizen participation and collaboration in promoting open government. If there is no doubt that public data reuse is a central issue of open governments, a priori, this policy falls under the third requirement of the open government, namely, transparency. Yet, this assertion shall be qualified since we consider that the right to re-use public information does not only pursue the objective of transparency in public administrations, but that it has above all for end to favor the flow of information.

This one is a requirement to favor a citizen participation and collaboration that is effective and efficient. A quality distribution of the information is a requirement for a public-spirited debate or to enabling the citizenry to participate in the co-construction of the law. Indeed, citizens cannot participate or collaborate without a full knowledge of the facts. In this respect, transparency is a requirement, but it required also an efficient flow of the information disclosed by governments and public administrations. In the same way, companies cannot bring their participation or their collaboration to the digital economy, and thus to the development of the society, if they cannot easily reuse the public information that should be disclosed in an open government. In this respect, companies’ participation and collaboration will be, for example, in the service of the quality, the effectiveness and the efficiency of public services by developing apps that analyze data opened by public administrations. This analysis helps improve public policies.

For these reasons, analyzing the legal framework of the public information reuse is essential to understand the restrictions to citizen participation and collaboration, and, on the contrary, to think how ensuring an effective distribution of the public information that is disclosed by governments. That last requirement is essential because it enables citizens, civil servants, or companies to better participate and collaborate. From this point of view, it is crucial to examine whether governments should provide a free access to their data. To put it in another way, can we

Bibliographies de l'auteur

William Gilles, Université Paris 1 Panthéon-Sorbonne

Doctor of Laws, William Gilles is a tenured associate professor (HDR) at the Sorbonne Law School (University Paris 1 Pantheon-Sorbonne) where he is the director of the Master’s degree in Digital Law, and the director of the Chair of the Americas.
He is the cofounder and President of IMODEV.
He is a member of the board of the Sorbonne Law School, and a member of the Academic Board of the University Paris 1 Panthéon-Sorbonne, where he serves on the Research Council of the University.
(accéder au CV

Irène Bouhadana, Université Paris 1 Panthéon-Sorbonne

Doctor of Law, Irène Bouhadana is a tenured associate professor at the Sorbonne Law 
School (University Paris 1 Pantheon-Sorbonne) where she is the director of the Master’s
degree in Digital Law.
She is the cofounder and Secretary-General of IMODEV.
As a member of the Chair of the Americas of the University Paris 1 Panthéon-Sorbonne, she chairs the Sorbonne International Research Group on “Human Rights and Economic Systems in the Digital Era”.
In 2014, she was awarded the Prize “Trophée de la pédagogie” (SMBG).
Since 2015, she is one of the two Open Government Partnership (OGP) IRM Researchers for France. 
She is the director of the International Journal of Open Government, and of the International Journal of Digital and Data Law.
Her research focuses on open government and parliament issues (open parliaments, government transparency, citizen participation, government accountability), digital law issues (right to privacy, cybercrime, fundamental rights in the digital society), eGovernement, smart cities, and Parliament Issues.



Comment citer

Gilles, W., & Bouhadana, I. (2017). Drawing Up a New Legal Ecosystem for Open Data to Improve Citizen Participation and Collaboration. Revue Internationale Des Gouvernements Ouverts, 3, 1–14. Consulté à l’adresse https://ojs.imodev.org/?journal=RIGO&page=article&op=view&path[]=44



Partie 1 - Citizen participation in the open government age

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