Good question. What about it?!
The Open Referral Initiative intends to establish interoperability and open exchange between different kinds of systems. This entails building on what is currently in use. At the same time, it also entails moving beyond barriers to accessibility of community resource data.
The 2-1-1 taxonomy is widely used among certified providers of ‘information and referral’ services, as well as some government agencies. For some purposes, it is a very valuable tool for precisely categorizing types of services. For many organizations and most users of community resource data, however, it is a significant barrier for at least two reasons — first, it is a proprietary artifact, and second, it is difficult to use without technical training.
We hold open questions about how the field might move beyond such barriers. Because 2-1-1 Taxonomy is such a valuable knowledge resource for the sectors of health, human, and social services – and because its true value only grows with the number of users – we believe it should be freely accessible for anyone to use.
How would the maintenance of such a resource possibly be sustained as a public good, given that it requires resources to maintain? We think that’s a great question. We should ask it, and seek answers! What do you think? Let’s talk 🙂