Local Government Association data events to help local authorities improve transparency

14 Apr 2015, 11:55 am

Two free events taking place next month will offer officers and councillors from English local authorities the opportunity to learn from one other about using locally-held open data and embedding it into policy.

Hampshire Hub - use of open data for planningThe day-long ‘Making open data work’ events will take place on 13 May in London and 20 May in Leeds, hosted by the Local Government Association (LGA), whose Local Open Breakthrough Programme has provided funding to more than 30 authorities to make use of local open data.

“There are lessons learned from this [project] for other local authorities on how to publish data to meet transparency requirements, improve service efficiencies from the sharing of data and making data comparable with that of other authorities”, said Dr Gesche Schmid, Programme Manager Transparency at the LGA.

She said that using open data local authorities can improve accountability and help to foster engagement with citizens, communities and business.

Local and central government speakers will offer their perspectives and there will be roundtable discussions on the barriers to publishing and using data and on how open data could be better used to add value to services, business and communities.

Web scientist and data journalist Jacqui Taylor, will present a session called ‘unlocking the future with open data’.

Case studies from the Local Open Breakthrough Programme will also be presented at the events. The programme received £1 million funding in 2013/14 and 2014/15 for local authorities from the Department for Business, Innovation and Skills and the Cabinet Office.

Projects include:

  • Derby City Council’s initiative to provide comprehensive, high quality, up-to-date information on local authority owned land and property assets
  • Hampshire County Council’s Linked Planning Register, an open source tool to enable collation and publication of linkable planning data (read our coverage)
  • Intelligent London: Skills Match, from a group of London Borough Councils, which brings skills and labour market data together to enable policymakers, practitioners and employers to address youth unemployment in London