List of open data local groups in England

open-data

#1

Hello
We (exactly me and @mhkhani and other guys) are a group of students and researchers from Iran planning to have a study tour about open data in U.K. in mid March and April, and we are going to connect with active local and civic group and/or governmental organisations in open data and open government that can help us to find how we can help our government to be more transparent, accountable and open.
Do you have any particular list of these types of institutions, organizations or open-data based startups?
If you have a connection please introduce or if you are in these kind of organizations would you please reply and inform us about it.
I am a member of Transparency4Iran, and ODPO, the first data portal for Iran and our goal of these study trip is to find out how UK government become the best.

Thank you
(Sorry if it’s not the right place to ask!)


#2

Of course you know already Open Knowledge. If yours is an UK tour you should consider that there are separate English (no website?) and Scottish chapters. I don’t know about Wales and Northern Ireland.

@mhkhani was at the IODC so you know the Open Data Institute, too. In addition to the London headquarter ODI has several “nodes” in the UK, with Leeds’ being one of the most active and interesting (with all respect for all others).

You may want to talk to companies to which open data is central to to their business model, like Open Corporates, Spend Network, Transport API

You may also be interested in charities that use open data. There aren’t many as most of them are still struggling using their own data in the first place :smiley: There is one charity whose sole purpose is helping other charities use data, and it’s DataKind, that has an UK chapter I volunteer for.

Finally, you may then think of extending your scope a little to digital rights. You don’t need me to explain how close the topic is to open data and transparency. There are many organisations working in that area, I’ll make a few examples only for you to investigate further: Privacy International Open Rights Group (practically, the UK’s equivalent to the EFF).


#3

You must stop by FlashHacks! FlashHacks is an open data ‘hackathon’ that takes place in London once a month, and it’s run by OpenCorporates, whom @giacecco already mentioned - they have the world’s largest open companies database.

If you join London Open Data Missions on Meetup, you can see when the dates for FlashHacks are and figure out if you want to come along. It’s a great evening of open data liberation and the guys from OpenCorporates are really knowledgeable about open data in the UK.

I have a connection and can help you join the OpenCorporates Slack if you want to be introduced to them!


#4

Hi @giacecco
Thank you for your detailed answer, especially for digital rights area. and studying the companies which their business model based on open data, is really useful for us and our country. maybe someone can launch sth similar to them in Iran.

We’ll create a spreadsheet of the institutes we found in the UK and we’ll share with you and other guys.

and about OKI local network, chapters and local groups, there’s a list at https://okfn.org/network/, but it seems to be incomplete, there’s no information about OKI Scottland. maybe we should ask @Mor about this page that is complete or not?


#5

Thanx for ur introduction @Bex. It was really exciting.
By the way, I met @hera Hussain, the Organizer, in IODC.
But it would be our pleasure if u add us, me and my colleague Hossein (@hmalekny) in their Slack.
I’m available with {@ mhkhani} and Hossein with {@ hmalekny} on Slack.


#6

Hi @mhkhani

Thanks for pointing this out. Somewhat strangely, given the local political situation in the UK, the Scotland local group is listed under United Kingdom :slight_smile: Apart from this oddity, the page is also a bit mangled and the information should be updated. We are also listed under https://discuss.okfn.org/c/local-groups/okscotland, but I’m embarrassed to say that there hasn’t been a whole lot of activity there recently.

There are other initiatives going on in Scotland, such as http://aberdeen.theodi.org and http://www.gov.scot/Publications/2016/08/5556. Let me know if I can help out with more info.


#8

@ewan_klein We appreciate your opinion, professor;
We will surely add these institutions to our list and will share with you.
But you’d be very helpful if you help us answering these questions:
First, do you have any relation with the institutions you introduced above? or could you please do us a favour and link us to them?
And second, we wonder if you have any list concluding governmental or nongovernmental institutions relating open data in England, Wales, Scotland and Northern Ireland

Thank you very much,


#9

Yes, but please let me know specifically what you are looking for and what you hope to achieve.

I am not aware of such a list, but it may well be that someone more connected into the England open government organisations might be. @Mor should know, or know who knows.

The following is a bit out of date, but most of the open data organisations in Scotland are on this list:

http://okfnscot.github.io/open-data-scotland/

Note that open data is regarded as a devolved matter with respect to Scottish Government. I think it’s fair to say that in general, open data initiatives started by the UK government are more advanced, and much better resourced, than those in Scotland.


#10

@ewan_klein

Yes, but please let me know specifically what you are looking for and what you hope to achieve.

We are trying to arrange a research trip to England, Wales, Scotland and Northern Ireland around late Mars and early April 2017 to study about open data, its role in government, new start-ups, ways to open government data, attempt to encourage governmental and non-governmental organisations to open their data and same other subjects.
We’ll use a method and some compiled list of questions (which we are preparing) trying to use this trip’s results spreading open data in our own country.

This is why we need a list of these institutions which we should study about. After preparing it, we will also try to find some of them which are more probable to answer our questions and help us to promote open data in Iran. So we can connect with them to know each other better or even have a meeting among that trip.

So, with this approach, we wonder if you know some specific organisations and institutions to introduce or link us with.
We hope that we can share our travel’s results as an article with researchers and policy makers in our country. Besides, we collect some articles about England’s situation to read.
If there is any question, please feel free to ask. it’s a pleasure for us to answer.

I am not aware of such a list, but it may well be that someone more connected with the England open government organisations might be. @Mor should know, or know who knows.

@Mor (sorry for lots of mentioning you!:slight_smile:) is one of the people we asked her for help and she magnanimously helped us just as always. Surely we will keep in touch with her for the last coordinates.

The following is a bit out of date, but most of the open data organisations in Scotland are on this list:
http://okfnscot.github.io/open-data-scotland/

Thank you for the list you have introduced.

Note that open data is regarded as a devolved matter with respect to Scottish Government. I think it’s fair to say that in general, open data initiatives started by the UK government are more advanced, and much better resourced, than those in Scotland.

Thank you for mentioning the differences between England and Scotland’s situations. It’s in our schedule to zoom on England but if we find a better case in other sides of Britain we’ll use their knowledge and experiences for sure, too.


#11

@mhkhani Let me know nearer the time (e.g. early February) if you plan to come to Edinburgh. That would allow you to meet with people involved in open data from both Scottish Government and City of Edinburgh Council, and I can put you in touch with them.


#12

@ewan_klein
certainly, we will contact you nearer our trip.
Thank you so much