local government

Unlocking the Power of Public Sector Data

local government

08:45 - 15:40

Thursday 5 March 2020

Central London

This Forum will provide delegates with the opportunity to gain policy insights into the implementation of effective data innovation strategies and ethical data usage across central and local government. Delegates will hear from The Department for Digital, Culture, Media & Sport, Centre for Data Ethics and Innovation, Open Data Institute and UK Data Service on how data can be best utilised and shared in a safe, secure manner, to develop more efficient services, drive innovative services for the public good. Furthermore, best practice case studies from across central and local government contexts will share successful methods for driving effective data innovation.


This forum is specifically designed for Central and Local Government. Typical job titles will include:

  • Data Officers
  • Chief Data Officers
  • Data Architects
  • Data Scientists
  • Analytics Managers
  • Chief Information Officers
  • ICT Directors
  • Automation Managers
  • Software Engineers
  • Intelligence Managers
  • Head of ICT Transformation
  • Heads of Information Assurance
  • Heads of IT
  • Chief Technology Officers
  • IT Directors

This forum is also open to the private sector to encourage debate and networking.

Key Speakers Confirmed:
  • Senior Representative, Data Strategy Team, The Department for Digital, Culture, Media & Sport
  • Senior Representative, Office for Artificial Intelligence
  • Jenni Tennison OBE, CEO, Open Data Institute
  • Roger Taylor, Chair, Centre for Data Ethics and Innovation
  • Dr Victoria Moody, Deputy Director and Director of Impact, UK Data Service & JISC
View the agenda and additional speakers

According to Big Data LDN’s Public Sector Data Report 2019, 54% of  surveyed organisations have been actively using data analytics to help address the challenges of public sector spending cuts. The UK’s public sector currently faces enormous pressures, and in recent years there has been growing interest in the potential for data analytics to help public sector organisations make better decisions and improve their services. The findings of the report support this shift, and show that 91% of respondents’ data data-driven initiatives have benefited their respective departments, highlighting the increasingly important relationship between data analytics and the improvement of public services.

In February 2017 the Government Digital Service released the Government Transformation Strategy: Better Use of Data, which set out how government data was to be used more effectively, particularly where services crossed organisational boundaries. Proposals included, removing barriers to effective data use, managing and using data securely and appropriately, using data to improve decision making, and expanding data science and analytical capability across government. Building on this, the Department for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport produced the Data Ethics Framework in June 2018, which outlined a set of principles and dedicated workbook to guide the design and delivery of government data projects, and help teams clarify their ethical decision making. More recently, the government announced the first National Data Strategy in July 2019, which aims to build the UK into a world leading data economy, and ensure people, businesses and organisations can trust the data ecosystem. Further aims include developing data science skills, so that individuals are able to operate effectively within the ecosystem, and get access to high quality data when they need it.

Given the low resource setting of the public sector, organisations are aware they need to move towards service models based on predication and prevention, rather than responding to challenges as they arise. It is therefore imperative that data is harnessed more effectively, so that resources can be deployed to manage demand and cases of the highest need. Now is the time for public sector leaders to act, and ensure their employees are confident and well equipped to handle large amounts of data effectively and responsibly.


Registration and Networking


Chair's Welcome Address

Jenni Tennison OBE, CEO, Open Data Institute (CONFIRMED)


Morning Keynote: Exploring the Progress and Ambitions of the National Data Strategy

  • Developing the UK’s National Data Strategy’s long-term vision, and how to build the UK into a world-leading data economy
  • Ensuring that people, businesses and organisations trust the data ecosystem, are sufficiently skilled to operate effectively within it, and can get access to high-quality data when they need it
  • Providing clarity to the wide range of data-led work across government while creating a shared understanding across the economy of how data is to be used
  • Discussing the two phases of the consultation so far, and what 2020 holds for the final strategy and partnership action plan

Senior Representative, Data Strategy Team, The Department for Digital, Culture, Media & Sport (CONFIRMED)


Keynote: Understanding the Link Between Service Innovation and Access to Public Sector Data

  • Improving access to data in the public domain that will encourage innovation and enable service designers to improve services for citizens
  • Exploring the various projects the ODI is rolling out to support service designers in the form of free tools
  • Highlighting practical recommendations for areas in which the public sector and central government could better implement open data, such as technology infrastructure, organisational collaboration and digital skills

Jenni Tennison OBE, CEO, Open Data Institute (CONFIRMED)


Questions and Answers Session


Refreshments and Networking


Keynote: Developing the Right Governance Regime for Data-Driven Technologies

  • Exploring how the Centre for Data Ethics and Innovation is bridging the gap between sector and society to support responsible innovation, and build public trust in the government’s use of data
  • Identifying how to use new AI and data driven technology safely for the benefit of the population
  • Understanding what governance structures, rights and regulations will be needed to help the public, government and businesses use data driven technologies
  • Discussing how to ensure data innovation strategies are transparent and have in built systems of accountability

Roger Taylor, Chair, Centre for Data Ethics and Innovation (CONFIRMED)


Case Study: Outlining how the Department for Work and Pensions Data Science Hub Hopes to Transform the Monitoring of Pilot Services

  • Learning how the Department for Work and Pensions’ Sheffield Data Science Hub is planning to aggregate data to monitor the performance of pilots of digital services
  • Outlining how the digital trialling framework will support decision making and a more agile approach to running trials
  • Exploring how the plan will create a robust, semi-automated and repeatable date pipeline to produce datasets, with features agreed beforehand by teams using the services
  • Discussing how the trial will allow pilot teams to benefit from real-time feedback on performance, and adjust accordingly

Tetyana Mykhaylyk, Head – Sheffield Data Science Hub, Department for Work and Pensions (invited)


Questions and Answers Session


Lunch and Networking


Special Keynote: Driving the Responsible and Ethical Uptake of Data Related Technologies and Practices Across the Public Sector

  • Considering carefully, the social implications of the data, algorithms and machine learning used in public services, and practices of handling large volumes of sensitive citizen data
  • Exploring a holistic approach to incorporating good practice into data techniques, data ethics, information assurance, and quality assurance
  • Developing sound knowledge of data protection law and other relevant legislation, and the appropriate use of new technologies

Senior Representative, Office for Artificial Intelligence (CONFIRMED)


Keynote: Understanding the Impact that Open Data has on the Public Sector

  • Sharing stories of working with data in the public sector, challenges and opportunities
  • Licensing and governance for research data, some recommended practice
  • Outlining how public sector organisations can access data from the UK Data Service
  • Demonstrating data impact on policy and the economy, understanding the specific beneficial effect
  • Understanding lived experience over time; a focus on the pressures and changes in people’s lives

Dr Victoria Moody, Deputy Director and Director of Impact, UK Data Service & JISC (CONFIRMED)


Questions and Answers Session


Refreshments and Networking


Case Study: Employing Algorithmic Technology to Improve Local Services

  • Learning how Bristol City Council has deployed an innovative algorithm to create vulnerability profiles for citizens, and guide front line staff on supporting individuals most at risk of harm and abuse
  • Exploring how the algorithm has collected information on 25% of Bristol’s population, based on data from the police, NHS, DWP and local authority servers
  • Discussing how results have already been used to inform the allocation of over £800,000 to fund more social workers and family support workers in poorer areas of the city, where risk factors such as school exclusions, domestic violence and crime indicate emerging demand
  • Understanding the risks of data misinterpretation, hacking, and need for human judgement to remain the primary decision maker for service provision

Gary Davies, Head of Early Intervention and Targeted Services for Children and Families, Bristol City Council (invited)


Case Study: Delivering Cultural and Systemic Change to Improve Data Sharing Across the County

  • Understanding how Worcestershire Council is working with public sector partners to use data to inform service design, evaluation, commissioning and delivery
  • Learning how to empower staff with the knowledge and understanding required to engage with emerging data sharing opportunities
  • Improving outcomes for service users by providing the foundation for more integrated, user-centric support across local providers
  • Expanding system capacity and reducing duplication across partner organisations in response to siloed working practices and lack of pro-active information sharing cultures
  • Enlightening local residents on what data is held on them, who can access it and how they can control it

John Gladman, Interim Chief Information Officer, Worcestershire County Council (invited)


Questions and Answer Session


Chairs Summary and Close

*Programme subject to change*

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