WHY ACCESS TO DATA MATTERS AND WHAT WE CAN DO TO IMPROVE ACCESS AND REUSABILITY
The Flint water crisis highlights the need for accessible and (re)usable data by all stakeholders. For example, if the officials who had originally switched the water supply had access to data in a way that was usable to them that showed how switching the water source without changing treatment would impact the infrastructure and water quality, they may have taken steps to prevent the crisis in the first place. Flint citizens should have access to data that shows water quality information and the status of infrastructure updates, in a way that is useful to them. Access to usable data is not just a nice thing to have; it can be a matter of life and death.
We will outline the basic rights and responsibilities of researchers, data professionals, institutions, and others with regards to improving data access and reusability. For example, stakeholders and community members should have access to data that impacts their communities, and resources (such as access to researchers) to understand that data in a way that is useful for their situation.