Introducing West Midlands Open Data Forum.  Notes from a talk by Andrew Mackenzie
I was at a tech event recently waiting in line for coffee, talking to a guy. He said ‘what do you do?’ I pointed to my badge. The badge said: West Midlands Open Data Forum
Him: I don’t know what that means
Me: [slowly] West Midlands?
Him: [ irritated] Yes I know that, but the rest …
OK let’s break it down
**West Midlands**
Geography and scope
7 authorities, the LEP
Also, travel time to meet people
Network proximity: social graph for tech, innovation and civic hacking

**Open Data**

A licence which places no restriction on re-use
The Open Government Licence or CC4.0 or ODbL
Compliant with The Open Definition
Freely available

Open Government: the Open Government Partnership
Open Contracting: Slovenia
Open Source: Github, fail fast, fail forward
Open Knowledge: OKFN
Open Access:ORCID
Open Science: Science Commons

Big Data
Smart Cities

Most Advanced Yet Acceptable
The human genome project

It’s not a thing
It’s not a portal or a platform
Those are ways of distributing data

It will be a **mixed economy**

Open and closed source
Selling data vs open data
Closed and open government
Market and public funding
Corporate and public organisations in public service delivery
Corporate and public ownership of data
Open Access vs fee charging publishing (Finch)
Open research data vs traditional IP in universities

There are different outcomes depending on the mix of open and closed. For example data stores can use open source (CKAN) or closed source software (Socrata).
forum |ˈfɔːrəm|
noun (pl.forums)
1 a meeting or medium where ideas and views on a particular issue can be exchanged: we hope these pages act as a forum for debate.
• an Internet message board.
2 chiefly N. Amer.a court or tribunal.
3 (pl.fora |ˈfɔːrə| ) (in an ancient Roman city) a public square or marketplace used for judicial and other business.

This forum is a place to broker deals between data holders and organisations who can use the data.
Primarily public sector information
Organisations carrying out a public task
Including contractors, social enterprises
SMEs and start ups
Hack days and developer networks

steering committee
consensus on major issues
-social as well as economic case
-regional datastore
-open government
-public scrutiny

range of views and organisational interests represented
meaning of forum: debate
risks, dependencies

Work to date
Defining what we are for and where we can have a distinct role
Does not duplicate existing groups

work to do
– adding more SMEs and developers
– extending local government contacts in the region
– add more academic research links
– add more public authorities

Working method
– add small groups of experts around specific themes

Transport working group
Teresa’s blog shows transport data in use

Also OpenStreetMap in the region


Procurement February 11th Capita contract with BCC, EU new regs, open procurement, good examples: Slovenia

Health March 11th tbc Susannah leads

Forum blog at
Andrew Mackenzie

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