This is a periodic newsletter of the interesting things we’ve seen and what we are thinking about in open source policy analysis.

Predicting the spread of coronavirus. As the coronavirus epidemic spreads, researchers are working to predict the course of the outbreak to inform public safety measures. Last week, a group of researchers in England, Scotland, and the United States published and open sourced their transmission model, which estimates the number of people currently infected and lays out possible scenarios for the spread of the virus. Link and link

New capabilities to develop and share tax policy simulations. Last week, online users of Tax-Brain,* Tax-Cruncher,* and the Cost-of-Capital-Calculator* gained new capabilities to develop and share simulations. The new features are thanks to an update from the open-source model publishing platform, Compute Studio. To build your own simulations, visit Tax-Brain, Tax-Cruncher, and Cost-of-Capital-Calculator.

Policy Simulation Library (PSL) to host Federal Reserve Bank of New York (FRBNY). The upcoming PSL* meeting, hosted by OSPC at AEI on Friday, will feature a presentation from Marco Del Negro (FRBNY) on FRBNY’s open-source dynamic stochastic general equilibrium model (DSGE). The FRBNY uses its DSGE model to inform monetary policy by forecasting economic performance, explaining economic shocks, and conducting policy experiments. Link

J-PAL publishes guides on opening research data. While research transparency and open data are essential for advancing social science research, researchers must balance transparency with data privacy. J-PAL, an MIT research center focused on alleviating global poverty, has released two complementary guides, one on publishing research data and one on de-identifying data, designed to help increase transparency while protecting study participant data. Link

Protecting wildfire fighters with software. As wildfires rage in Australia, a Spanish start-up called Prometeo is creating an open-source device to protect firefighters as they battle wildfires. Prometeo, winner of the 2019 IBM Call for Code Challenge, collects real-time data, such as temperature, humidity, and smoke concentration, to monitor firefighter safety. Link

* These projects are attendees or graduates of OSPC’s incubator program.

Edited by Matt Jensen and Peter Metz