What is the project challenge?
With the government’s push towards localism – such as the right to build, communities need to understand publicly available data before they can make informed decisions. For
example Councils now publish data on all expenditure over £500, but this is often difficult to analyse and understand. Community Data Explorer will demystify this available open data, working with a rural community, to find ways of visualising information, to help shape how their public services are delivered.
Who are involved?
Cybermoor – a community-based co-operative, Swirrl – a Manchester-based open data specialist company, and academics and PhD students from Lancaster University.
What new digital technology is developing?
Community Data Explorer will create an app to enable the community of Alston moor and other rural communities to analyse data and take control of their local services and assets.
The project will explore possibilities for delivering services differently and enable citizens to develop new skills to improve the workforce. Through the project local residents will identify priority data sets in the community, obtain access to the data, clean the data and develop an API (application programming interface). These apps will form the heart of a
“Community Data Explorer” app for local authorities.
What are the intended impacts?
Visualising public data in compelling ways can make community members more aware of the possibility of delivering new services. By developing a greater understanding of data and analysis, citizens can develop new skills, understanding what data is available, and what they can expect to achieve.