Open data is the theme for this year’s Cathie Marsh Memorial Lecture

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open data
The government’s open data initiative will be under the spotlight in the 2012 Cathie Marsh Memorial Lecture at the Royal Statistical Society on 13 November, 2012.
The lecture this year features three expert speakers in this area: Iain Bell, deputy director, public sector and household at the Office for National Statistics; Simon Briscoe, special advisor (statistics) to the Public Administration Select Committee and deputy chair of the UK Data Service; and Peter Elias, professor at the Institute for Employment Research at the University of Warwick.
The speakers will discuss the benefits and risks of open data, from the points of view of both providers and users of that data. They will look at the issues such as what data is available and what could be made available, the challenges of dealing with and disseminating large amounts of data, the resources needed and the accessibility of current formats. The lecture will also cover concerns with open data, such as potential threat to privacy.
Open data has become a key issue for the coalition government, which has committed itself to publishing more public sector data than ever before. It is hoped that the increasing amounts of public sector information being made available to the public will promote transparency of government, improve policy-making, and boost business innovation. The UK has also just become the new lead chairman of the Open Government Partnership.
The meeting, which was jointly organised by the RSS Social Statistics Section and the Social Research Association, will be chaired by John Pullinger, RSS president-elect. The event is free but there is usually high demand for places so pre-registration is essential. The lecture starts at 5pm and runs until 7pm, with registration from 4.30pm.

Cathie Marsh Memorial Lecture

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