On January 25 and 26, 2024, Transparency International Latvia (biedrība “Sabiedrība par atklātību – Delna) organized an anti-corruption open data hackathon in cooperation with the Finnish and Estonian chapters of Transparency International, during which experts from different countries gave participants insight into the use of open data. As a result, participants from Finland, Estonia, Latvia, India and Germany focused on solving specific problems, generating ideas on how to use open data to improve governance and uncover problems and risks.


The created ideas are relevant, taking into account the current geopolitical situation and the internal political processes of the countries. One of the developed ideas is related to the identification of companies that continue cooperation with Russia or Belarus and participate in public procurements. Another team has developed an index of corruption of public institutions. The participants of the hackathon developed ideas by studying the applicability of the tools in the future and the necessary improvements so that the idea is easy to use and anyone can identify the specific problems successfully and quickly. ​


The tools developed by the participants can be found here ->


Lessons learned during the ideation process

  • Macrodata and microdatasets can be combined to find evidence, identify high-risk individuals connected to the government, and trace bank records and financial statements. Participants developed indicators at the macro and micro level, which need to be implemented in the overall process flow with the help of machine learning clustering algorithms;
  • Based on the data of the Central Statistical Bureau of Latvia, the number of companies that continue to export to Russia and Belarus and that win public procurements has been generally unchanged over the past 2 years. On the other hand, comparing the data of 2022 and 2023, those companies whose real beneficiaries are citizens of Russia or Belarus and which won public procurements have increased;
  • There are no restrictions on rejecting a bid in public procurement based on whether the company imports/exports goods to Russia or Belarus. It is difficult to know whether the company directly imports/exports to Russia or Belarus, or if it happens intermediately through third countries;
  • Specific open data sources can be used to develop specific good practices, for example, the open data of the company register can be used to develop good practices for assessing conflicts of interest and developing lobbying rules.


One of the several criteria in the development of ideas was the possibility of applying them in all three countries (Finland, Latvia and Estonia) in order to promote cross-border cooperation in implementing good governance and fighting corruption.

The participants gained practical experience and conclusions about the fact that open data is not sufficiently integrated in all countries and specific details may differ in specific open data sets. Differences in data availability also affected the process of developing the previously mentioned ideas and tools. For example, in order to obtain data from the register of beneficial owners in Finland, registration is required, while in Estonia and Latvia, data can be obtained without registration. Read more about what is different and what is common in open data in Latvia, Estonia, and Finland in the comparative analysis conducted by colleagues from the three countries here->.


This publication has been produced with the financial support from the Nordic Council of Ministers. The content of this publication is the sole responsibility of the coordinators of this project and do not necessarily reflect the views or policies of the Nordic Council of Ministers.

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