Laura Manley

Adjunct Assistant Professor of Public Service

Laura Manley is an Adjunct Assistant Professor of Public Service of NYU's Robert F. Wagner Graduate School of Public Service. She is also a Digital Entrepreneurship and Open Data Consultant with the World Bank’s Trade and Competitiveness Global Practice. Laura specializes in utilizing government data for economic growth, working with low- and middle-income countries on their data policies. She is a lead author of the Open Data for Business Tool, which is the first assessment methodology for private sector use of government data.

Laura is also the Co-Founder of the Center for Open Data Enterprise in Washington DC, where she leads partnerships and programs. At the Center, she oversees both the Open Data Impact Map, the first global mapping of the uses of government data and the Interagency Data Roundtables series in partnership with the White House Office of Science and Technology Policy.

In addition to her ICT work, Laura has over a decade of strategic planning experience with multiple international agencies including the United Nations Department of Economic and Social Affairs and Office of the High Commissioner for Human Rights, UNICEF, the National Endowment for Democracy, and MasterCard Foundation.

She holds a Masters degree in Public Administration from NYU Wagner focusing on international policy and entrepreneurship and a Bachelors degree in Business Administration from the University of Massachusetts Amherst.

An introduction to emerging trends in data, technology, and their applications to social innovation. When you look up the weather forecast, use an app to plan your commute, or check an online ratings site to find a local doctor, you’re using open data. Open data - free public data, typically provided by governments, that anyone can use without restrictions - has become an integral part of our daily lives. It provides citizens, businesses, and nonprofits with critical information to make more informed decisions. This data, along with many other emerging technologies, is changing the way citizens make decisions, projects are developed and measured, policies are created, and social innovators are changing the world.

This course provides an overview of innovative uses of data and how they shape our decisions. Economic, political, social, and legal perspectives will be introduced through both domestic and international project lenses. The course will teach students how to:

  • Understand the growing data ecosystem and key resources available,
  • Identify opportunities for innovation by utilizing data or new technologies, and
  • Apply data-driven techniques to current social innovation projects.

Through a combination of class discussions, case studies, articles, and real-world projects, students will gain deep insights into how to utilize data in current work and projects. 

Key US and international initiatives that will be examined throughout the class include: the official U.S. government data site providing increased public access to federal government datasets, the World Bank’s development data portal, and the United Nations Global Partnership for Sustainable Development Data. The instructor will use firsthand knowledge working on these initiatives to help students navigate these institutions to find the innovation spaces within them.

Download Syllabus

An introduction to emerging trends in data, technology, and their applications to social innovation. When you look up the weather forecast, use an app to plan your commute, or check an online ratings site to find a local doctor, you’re using open data. Open data - free public data, typically provided by governments, that anyone can use without restrictions - has become an integral part of our daily lives. It provides citizens, businesses, and nonprofits with critical information to make more informed decisions. This data, along with many other emerging technologies, is changing the way citizens make decisions, projects are developed and measured, policies are created, and social innovators are changing the world.

This course provides an overview of innovative uses of data and how they shape our decisions. Economic, political, social, and legal perspectives will be introduced through both domestic and international project lenses. The course will teach students how to:

  • Understand the growing data ecosystem and key resources available,
  • Identify opportunities for innovation by utilizing data or new technologies, and
  • Apply data-driven techniques to current social innovation projects.

Through a combination of class discussions, case studies, articles, and real-world projects, students will gain deep insights into how to utilize data in current work and projects. 

Key US and international initiatives that will be examined throughout the class include: the official U.S. government data site providing increased public access to federal government datasets, the World Bank’s development data portal, and the United Nations Global Partnership for Sustainable Development Data. The instructor will use firsthand knowledge working on these initiatives to help students navigate these institutions to find the innovation spaces within them.

Download Syllabus