Wednesday, 20 June 2012

Public sector information and open data: which way forward for the UK?

an article by Stephen Saxby and Chris Hill (affiliation(s) not provided) published in International Journal of Public Law and Policy Volume 2 Number 3  (2012)


Since 2009, the move towards open data policies in the UK, also currently under review in proposals to replace PSI Directive 2003/98/EC on access and re-use of data, is having a profound impact on UK policy towards public sector information (PSI) that, as a resource, goes to the core of its function and purpose.

Driven by principles of openness and transparency, the process now supports the systematic release into the public domain of PSI in the form of datasets. The government believes that collective scrutiny of such data, while contributing to transparency, may also offer new insights into policy. Expectations have grown and new partnerships are emerging that blur traditional distinctions as to what is “public” and “private” in this regard.

Government has also been listening to the ideas of the founder of the World Wide Web that much more can be secured from today’s web via adoption of new techniques for linking data. The important contribution that location data, “information rich” in content, can make towards policy development has been recognised and acted upon.

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