Latest Public Sector News

20.03.12

Strategy board to increase access to Government data

A new independent Data Strategy Board is to advise Government on what data should be released to the public and how this should be published. At least a third of the members will come from outside Government.

The Department for Business, Innovation and Skills said the board “will advise ministers on what data should be released and has the potential to unlock growth opportunities for businesses across theUK”.

The board will seek to make data more easily accessible and will work with organisations such as the Met Office, Ordnance Survey and Companies House. A budget of £7m will be used to purchase existing rights to data and to provide evidence on how data will generate economic growth and social benefit.

Chris Yiu, author of a report from think tank Policy Exchange entitled A Right To Data, said: “This is a step in the right direction toward opening up theUK's public data for free for everyone. There is an opportunity here to shape the open data agenda and it's important that people from all fields get involved.”

Cabinet Office minister Francis Maude, who will be jointly responsible for the board with universities and science minister David Willetts, said: “The new structure for Open Data will ensure a more inclusive discussion, including private sector data users, on future data releases, how they should be paid for and which should be available free of charge.”

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