Thursday 21 January 2010

One-stop shop for Government data launched

PM, Liam Byrne and Tim Berners Lee at Smarter Government seminar in 2009; Crown copyrightA major new website has been launched to provide the public with a free, one-stop shop for Government data.

The site, contains more than 2,500 sets of data on topics such as crime, education and health. The data can also be used to create applications, and already has a number available, including the ‘School Finder’ to help parents locate their nearest schools.

Visit the website

Digital Britain Minister Stephen Timms, World Wide Web inventor Sir Tim Berners-Lee and Professor Nigel Shadbolt from the University of Southampton worked together to launch the website.

The project was announced by the Prime Minister last year as part of Putting the Frontline First: Smarter Government.

Speaking about today’s launch, the PM said:

“I am delighted that today we are launching a beta version of and able to fulfil our ambition to be among the first governments in the world to open up public information in a way that is far more accessible to the public.

“As well as providing opportunities for business, this increased transparency and accountability will enable citizens to compare local services, lobby for improvements, choose providers and demand changes in service delivery - with the web as a powerful new tool for sharing customer experience. I am extremely grateful to Sir Tim Berners-Lee and Professor Nigel Shadbolt for their hard work which has helped make this day possible.”

In the run-up to today’s launch, 2,400 registered developers were given access to a preview version of the site so that they could offer feedback and start experimenting with the data.

The website will use a new, open licence allowing Government-owned data to be freely reused by anybody to ensure that people can continue to create new products.

Previous story: Putting the frontline first: Smarter Government


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