8th JULY 2014

Attended by: Susannah Goh (Birmingham Science City) ‑ Chair
  Don Dhaliwal (BIP)
  Ted Ryan (RnR Organisation)
  Pauline Roche (RnR Organisation)
  Andrew McKenzie (Open Mercia)
  Chris Price (digiconsultancy) ‑ Secretary
  Ardavan Amini (BCU)
Apologies: Heike Schuster‑James (Digital Birmingham)
  Simon Whitehouse (Data Unlocked)
  Teresa Jolley (Data Journalist)
  Bethan Bishop (Heart of England NHS Trust)
Minutes of the Last Meeting:The notes of the meeting of 9th June were agreed as a truly representative.
Matters Arising:CKAN Data SetsPR noted that a Birmingham Energy data set had been added to CKAN.  She asked that the request for BCC to add available data sets to this open store be carried forward.Action: HSJ to consider provision of BCC data to the open CKAN.

Chair of WMODF

Thanks to AM for contributions made during his year as Chair.

AM will continue to be a member of the WMODF Steering Group. Events SG thought it important to harvest the momentum of our recent WMODF activities and maintain the interest and interaction of their participants.  There was considerable energy at our event in May.  AM has a list of attendees for this and other events. Future events were proposed.  These include:

  • A speed-networking data event for data developers to take place at the end of September. Friday 26th September, 2014 (TBC).
  • A learn and share event with current data producer/holder champions on 20th November, 2014 (TBC).  (DD notes that he has ongoing contact with Paul Beckley of Centro).
  • A challenge event in January to bring holders and developers/users together. On 15th January, 2015 (TBC).

Expanding WMODF’s Reach and Activities SG referred to the wide range of contacts of Birmingham Science City.  She is happy to promote WMODF activities through Birmingham Science City networks.There is a large volume of potentially ‘open’ data held by the universities. The group should look at exploring how this can be accessed and used.Action: AA to work through BCU to try to get open data release and usage discussed at the Pro‑Vice Chancellors’ Forum. Member UpdatesBCC‑Negotiation with CKAN still underway so the contract is not yet signed.  There is an aim to resolve this by the end of July for an operational date in September. ‑The request for approval for an approach to Amey for their data is underway.   Health‑HEFT is identifying static data sets that could be shared alongside Centro travel data for access (by companies etc.) via the platform. ‑HEFT is mapping which data (if any) is already being shared with 3rd parties to inform patient services. ‑In parallel there is exploration of which datasets could be provided to support real-time data use – which are unlikely to cause major issues regarding data protection/confidentiality in the first instance.   Elevator pitch‑Currently the document is more of a summary of key points to be used and a background summary rather than a 30‑second pitch, it needs to read more in the spirit of the latter.Action: comments to be sent by all members to SG to produce a final version. All actions to be completed before the date of the next meeting, unless completion relies on external factors. New ChairThe meeting gratefully accepted SG’s willingness to continue as Chair (pro tem).Date of the Next Meeting There will be no meeting in August and next date, subject to availability and agenda, was agreed to be Tuesday, 9th September.



The meeting was of two parts:

  • Presentation and discussion in wider group
  • Steering group meeting

Presentation / Discussion

There was a presentation by spendnetwork (https://spendnetwork.com) of their system recording and presenting details of national and local government spends and suppliers.  This was followed by a broad discussion of the position of open data in different sectors (local government, central government and charitable) and the need for a forum, such as WMODF, to bring together open data users and producers.  The outcome of the discussion was the confirmation of a need to build dialogue, not just between users and producers but also between local and national/European activities for the exchange of ideas, eg the formation of standards.  It was agreed that developing skills in the use of information as well as the technical aspects of programming and analysis was needed.

Steering Group Meeting


Attended by: Heike Schuster‑James (Digital Birmingham)
  Susannah Goh (Birmingham Science City)
  Andrew McKenzie (Open Mercia) ‑ Chair
  Chris Price (digiconsultancy) ‑ Secretary
Guests: Ted Ryan (RnR Organisation)
  Pauline Roche (RnR Organisation)
Apologies: Don Dhaliwal (BCU)
  Ardavan Amini (BCU)
  Simon Whitehouse (Data Unlocked)
  Teresa Jolley (Data Journalist)
It was agreed that the meeting was not quorate but the following decisions were made:
  • Andrew McKenzie resigned as Chair and a ‘rotating’ Chair will operate in the short‑term – Susannah Goh was acclaimed as Chair for the July meeting.
  • The July meeting will be 16:00‑17:00 on Tuesday, 8th July in Lancaster Circus, hosted by Heike (Digital Birmingham).  (No August meeting is anticipated.)
  • It was agreed that WMODF needed to build its networks and contacts in the users, producers, universities and other bodies (other local groups, national, international).
–        SW and PR had ideas re building user community.
–        CP could start to build links with providers if an elevator pitch could be              agreed.
–        SG, through BSC, can provide university links.
–        Identify a lead for other bodies, eg national orgs at a future meeting.
–        There was initial discussion of what WMODF could offer the networks.
  • A proposal was made to bring people together through an event framed around speed‑dating approaches and to be called speeddata (or datadating).  Heike to host organising meeting on 8th July, 14:00‑16:00 at Lancaster Circus.
  • Updates
–        Local CKAN now has 66 data sets.
–        BCC CKAN delayed by ongoing negotiations but still in pipeline.
–        Transport meeting with Amey (and others) awaiting approval by contract holders in BCC.
–        20 data sets identified to be released by BCC which were requested to be added to the local CKAN while awaiting the BCC implementation.
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