MTA Open Data User Personas


User Personas

User personas are a human-centered design tool that help open data program administrators design programs offerings for the full community open data users for maximum reach and impact. User personas help keep real people in mind when designing program offerings and can identify user segments in the open data community that have the potential to use open data to help solve problems.

The Metropolitan Transportation Authority (MTA) is excited to share our open data user personas which were designed in collaboration with our existing open data community through multiple stakeholder workshops. 

Why User Personas?

Why User Personas?
  • User personas help the Open Data Team to think of ways to implement, improve and increase participation in open data.
  • These fictional user profiles can be used to develop resources to help users access and use data.
  • The user profiles can also be considered when deciding on dataset prioritization, communication mediums, and outreach mechanisms.

List of Open Data Users

The following are some of the categories our data users fall under:
  • Software Developers
  • Internal Employees
  • Transportation Journalists
  • Non-Profit Organization Staff
  • City, State, or Federal Government Employees
  • Tech Educator/Professor
  • Student
  • Curious Customer

Users of MTA Open Data

Meeting our users where they are at

  • Users may need support in finding the exact data that they need
  • Need a clear way of communicating questions/comments/concerns about the actual data
  • Potential users need to receive outreach to be made aware of MTA's open data offerings
  • It may not be clear that MTA shared data through New York State as opposed to the City of New York
  • Host more entry-level events to help orient users to the open data portal and how to navigate to find MTA's data and future data offerings.
  • Participate in more public events, like NYC Open Data Week, to get the word out to potential data users.
  • Build how-to resources to help users access data from the portal and real-time feeds.
  • Keep public communications about the program up to date for maximum transparency.

Contact Us

If you have any questions, comments, or suggestions regarding the MTA Open Data Program, we would love to hear from you. Here are a few ways to get in touch and learn more:
Email us at
Check out our program page on at
Visualize our open datasets at
We welcome your feedback and look forward to hearing from you. Thank you for your interest in the MTA Open Data Program!
The content of this page is provided by the Metropolitan Transportation Authority (MTA).
Contact MTA at for any questions or comments regarding this content.