The Government has made transparency and open data a key priority as it fosters accountability, drives improvements in public services by informing choice, and stimulates innovation and growth. Open civil society, technical advances on the internet, greater accountability and efficiencies in delivering public services drive the opening up of public sector data. Open data means the data is free to access, use and reuse and is available via the internet based on the open government licence.

The LGA promotes open and transparent local government to meet local needs and demands. It encourages a meaningful approach to open data to 

  • foster accountability,
  • innovate and transform services leading to improvements and efficiencies, 
  • empower citizen and community groups to choose or run services and shape neighbourhoods 
  • drive local economic growth. 

The LGA has agreed a work programme to develop a sector-led approach to data transparency which puts local authority data into the public realm in ways that provide real benefits to citizens, business, councils and the wider data community. The programme includes a range of activities to promote the understanding of open data, develop a policy towards local transparency and identify and share good practice of open data use.

Many authorities already publish considerable data. Best practice and shared experience can be found on Local Open Data Community, which is housed on the Knowledge Hub.

Local Open Data Community – please note you will be prompted to sign-in and register if you are not already registered to the Knowledge Hub.

The Local Open Data Community is a  forum to share practice and hold conversations on:  

  • how authorities publish their data
  • how to make better use of data how to publish your data in a linked open format so that they can be combined and compared
  • when data cannot be published due to privacy, national security, commercial sensitivity or other restrictions. 

For further information, please email: transparency@local.gov.uk

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