Open Data for Sustainability Performance Assessment in Brazilian Cities

Abstract

Background:
The current volume, velocity and variety of open data allows agility and lower costs when studying or researching several elements around the theme of city development. The main objective of this research is to examine the sustainability performance of Brazilian cities using open data.
We used ‘hard’ indicators – statistical measures – derived from open data to verify how it might be possible to assess sustainability performance exclusively using secondary data. Open data collected from 21 municipalities was clustered according to the categories: natural environment – ecology and pollution, and built environment – location, design efficiency. The data were parameterized by the number of inhabitants in each municipality to obtain comparable values between municipalities with different sizes and then a linear interpolation was carried out to obtain normalized scores. As a preliminary study on the use of open data to assess the sustainability of cities, the results are significant in the context studied due the use of data on aspects with a high impact on sustainability issues in Brazil. The study also revealed that the volume and variety of data allows for analysis of the key measures of sustainability

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