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Review of open data to explore growth opportunities

The comprehensive review, which was announced in the Open Data White Paper, will improve access to data and help promote economic growth by …

This was published under the 2010 to 2015 Conservative and Liberal Democrat coalition government


The comprehensive review, which was announced in the Open Data White Paper, will improve access to data and help promote economic growth by examining the market for public sector information.

At the end of the review, recommendations will be made to Ministers on how to widen access and consider new and innovative opportunities for open data. In particular, the review will look at the following areas:

  • the current use of public sector information within government, the private sector and by the general public;
  • the opportunities for innovation and developing new data services with public sector information;
  • the constraints on developing new services with public sector information and the role that current funding models play;
  • he impact of competitiveness on existing and new businesses entering the market, as well as the way in which organisations secure access to data; and
  • an audit of current and past studies, as well as taking stock of the current use and re-use of public sector information.

Stephan Shakespeare, Chair of the Data Strategy Board, has been appointed to lead the independent review. The review complements the work of the Data Strategy Board and will ensure that other projects are aligned to the review, avoiding unnecessary duplication of time and resource. Stephan will also work with the Open Data Institute, to build on their work into the economic benefits and business models for open data, and with other public and private sector advocates of open data.

Francis Maude, Minister for the Cabinet Office, said:

“We strongly believe in the power of open data as a fuel for social and economic growth. But it is vital that we explore- as this review will do - the full potential of public sector information. We will see how we can improve access to this data and create opportunities for innovation, data-driven businesses and services that will benefit everyone.”

Matthew Hancock, Business Minister and sponsor of the Data Strategy Board, said:

“This independent review is a vital step in embedding a culture of openness and transparency with open data. It will distinguish those opportunities with the greatest potential to improve access to data and help stimulate economic growth.

“Above all we want everyone to benefit from open data - whether it’s taxpayers, businesses, the public sector or individuals - all working together to provide better public services and new revenue streams.”

Stephan Shakespeare, who will lead the review and is Chair of the Data Strategy Board, said:

“Technology is rapidly changing the way we use data and a number of opportunities are opening up, so it’s important that we have a comprehensive review to lay a good foundation for the future. I want to explore how we can get better data efficiency from the wealth of information out there and how it can work for businesses and the public sector alike.”

The review will look at the data from the Public Data Group which is made up of the different Trading Funds - Ordnance Survey, the Met Office, Land Registry and Companies House. **It will also consider information from across the wider public sector.

**The independent review’s recommendations will be considered in the context of value for money for the taxpayer and extracting value from the available data. The review is expected to report back in Spring 2013.

**Notes to editors

**1. The scope of the review will consider the full breadth of the public sector information market, both current and future. It will deal with both the private sector, civil society and general public use and re-use of public information as well as the potential benefits for how the public sector uses and re-uses its own data.

  1. The draft Terms of Reference for the review can be found at

  2. The Government will consider the recommendations for action from this review, including whether they are affordable and represent value for money, and publish a formal response in due course.

  3. Given the breadth of the review, other departments with policy responsibilities will be involved including HM Treasury, Ministry of Justice, The National Archives, Cabinet Office and BIS.

  4. You can find out more information on the Data Strategy Board at

  5. The Government’s economic policy objective is to achieve ‘strong, sustainable and balanced growth that is more evenly shared across the country and between industries.’ It set four ambitions in the ‘Plan for Growth’ (PDF 1.7MB), published at Budget 2011:

  • To create the most competitive tax system in the G20

  • To make the UK the best place in Europe to start, finance and grow a business

  • To encourage investment and exports as a route to a more balanced economy

  • To create a more educated workforce that is the most flexible in Europe.

Work is underway across Government to achieve these ambitions, including progress on more than 250 measures as part of the Growth Review. Developing an Industrial Strategy gives new impetus to this work by providing businesses, investors and the public with more clarity about the long-term direction in which the Government wants the economy to travel.

  1. BIS’s online newsroom contains the latest press notices and speeches, as well as video and images for download. It also features an up to date list of BIS press office contacts. See for more information.

Notes to Editors

Contact Information

Name BIS Press Office Job Title

Division Department for Business, Innovation & Skills Phone




Name Ed Smith Job Title

Division Department for Business, Innovation and Skills Phone 020 7215 5945 Fax



Published 22 October 2012