DataBridge findings & recommendations


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Full presentation of findings and recommendations from the Brighton-based DataBridge project, looking at the use of data & open data in the voluntary sector.

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  • Today is aimed at reporting back to all those who have been involved, but also to focus on the learning element – in particular to demonstrate some of the methods used by OCSI in the demo project that can be used by other organisations. For this reason the event is being filmed & webcast so that the learning can be shared more widely in the VCS. Thanks to: BHCC for use of chamber Public-i for filming CVSF for teas and coffees Hand over to Tom et al
  • All our observations are based on our interviews with the six groups, and reflect their experiences We have added insight from our own experience, OCSI on data analysis and Jo on policy.
  • Tendency in the sector to be led by what data / information is required for funders rather than starting from an organisational information needs or business planning basis.
  • Next 10 slides are issues & recommendations. 5 on data, commissioning, needs assessments etc and 5 on open data. Issue 1 – monitoring info Is all info actually required (are we wasting effort?) How is this info used in wider needs assessment / service planning Info used in contract management – siloed from other contracts / overall picture / service planning National / policy context – pooled budgets, joint commissioning, bulk purchasing... limited or siloed use of data may undermine local efforts to improve effectiveness & value
  • Recent JSNAs in the IC pilot pretty strong, but not clear that VCS data, info, evidence is to be systematically included in all needs assessments & scoping of commissions as a matter of course . May require a shift in mindset in VCS to contributing to an overall picture, rather than focusing solely on funding or commissions (of course, how this sits with organisational demands can be tricky) VCS leadership – lead by example
  • Outcome measures are difficult. Great idea, but really, really hard to do properly. IC aims to move to outcomes based commissioning, early stages of working out what this means. National policy work on developing standards for outcome measures under way, and Toynbee Hall are perhaps farthest ahead on this – Financial Inclusion outcome measures. Locally need to build on this work, and Advice Partnership are looking to be involved in work on this strand Really useful to use this as a catalyst for wider local work on outcome measures
  • City-wide data platform, real opportunities to both public and vol sector to share info (systems level) Potential for: Improving referral routes between orgs Reduce duplication / streamline services Better target groups of users VCS-based exploration of this potentially through SEWC and Advice P'ship But, not currently clear on links between: City Needs Board longer terms plans on data platform Roll out of IC BHLIS review
  • National / policy context of Open Public Services white paper, Open Data consultation & white paper = greater openness of data, more expectation to collaborate, increased competition in public services Concerns in sector about impact on smaller providers (this would apply to small commercial providers too). LA Best Value duties now include Duty to consider social value - With IC, increased openness, devolving to neighbourhood level, sensible to consider how service planning, spending and service delivery decisions contribute to achieving these aims.
  • Consultation closes next week – current focus is very much on what data, what format, commercial uses. Local govt focus on open data for social uses / service improvement / new partnerships? Challenges for VCS Resourcing, capacity, skills – extra work? Within existing contracts? How to make the most of it? Loss of advantage or independence – sharing data in more competitive environment, encouragement of collaboration / consortia, giving away assets?
  • General commitments on open data are welcome. How do we turn this into something that sets out a collective ambition (public, vol, tech, other commercial) For VCS and those focusing on social economy – need to think about linking with work highlighted earlier on sharing data and broadening sources of info for needs assessment And use LG leadership in setting context, ability to link (eg VCS with tech sectors), LG purchasing power to stimulate social uses of OD.
  • Open data is a thing that people have heard of, but disconnect between general perception and understanding how it could help their work specifically Some groups sceptical about open data at all, because of issue they see with existing data eg on LGBT disclosure When asked what data they'll want opened up, group tended to list what they believed LG holds plus what they wished LG would hold! Code of Recommended Practice on Local Data Transparency – includes expectation of Local Inventory of public data. But this needs to be accessible to a range of users & technical skills
  • Groups we worked with often struggled to find existing data sources, several requested data on populations they work with. Aware it's available, but is difficult to find & some said, hard to use BHLIS doesn't currently serve VCS audiences well & doesn't include VCS data. National scale – useful for VCS & communities to have a resource that both signposts existing data sources and supports to use Meantime – Strengthen publication of data on local populations several officers said they had supporting wider use of LG data in their role – would be useful to promote this option
  • VCS have data useful to others but issues/challenges: Understanding benefit to themselves/users (of their data being made available) Issues of competitiveness, independence, (survival?) Understand strategic links btw open data, city-wide intelligence, Intelligent Commissioning Practical stuff on compatibility, quality, resource Will always be differences in quality of data from different sources, key is to understand the differences and ensure you use all the appropriate data – especially for service planning and commissioning.
  • Open data ~could~ enable better research, greater innovation, stimulate public service improvement, but may not happen just by publication of more info alone. Different stimuli needed for public service / social uses than commercial e.g. clearer Govt aims, new kinds of cross-sectoral p'ships (public + VCS + tech), use LG commissioning practice & purchasing power to shape markets, transparency of process. Data users eg – public, commercial, academic, third sector groups who are primary users of data & info for improving services. Critical link in the chain between raw data + improvement Open data not free – publishing & hosting may be cheap, but collecting, maintaining, prioritising and making useful is not. LG is under immense financial pressure & may struggle to prioritise.
  • Exercise We'd like to get you up on your feet now & get your views 10 recommendations are on the flip chart sheets, there are post-its, sharpies etc near to each. I'd like you to annotate them for me. Could you consider: 1. Which of the issues & recommendations would you prioritise? (star the ones you like best) 2. What linkages, contacts, projects would be relevant (write it down 3. What tools can we develop that would be useful? (practical supports...)
  • This is the end of this phase of DataBridge, although we've been asked to re-run this session in London to a national audience, and we'll be contributing to the OD consultation & continuing to engage with groups like ODBH. There are a number of directions the project could go Keen to continue work in this area, perhaps more specifically on bringing together the use of public data with VCS data / community intelligence and community engagement techniques in areas like neighbourhood planning There's also much here that would be useful in engaging with commissioners in the city Happy to talk about any ideas.
  • DataBridge findings & recommendations

    1. 2. DataBridge Project <ul><li>Born at CityCamp in March – started as a discussion about potential uses of open data by the voluntary sector </li></ul><ul><li>Refined scope to look at how organisations use: </li></ul><ul><li>Their own data </li></ul><ul><li>Existing published datasets </li></ul><ul><li>Open data </li></ul><ul><li>OCSI provided their analysis skills to build capacity in the sector on use of data. A demonstration project with 1 group's data, addressing a universal question and setting out methods used </li></ul>
    2. 3. DataBridge Project <ul><li>Today is in three parts: </li></ul><ul><li>Tom from OCSI, and Tina from Amaze will present demo project, including 'How To' guides and signposting to resources </li></ul><ul><li>Jo will present findings over all and recommendations to Partnership, and we'll get your views </li></ul><ul><li>Paul Colbran will lead discussion about information needs in building a city-wide commissioning model </li></ul>
    3. 4. The groups - findings <ul><li>Data held by organisations can be summarised: </li></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Information on users </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Information for funders </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Qualitative information </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Information on user experience </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><li>Increasing importance for organisations of demonstrating need for services and the quality and impact of those services </li></ul><ul><li>Therefore skills, capacity and culture to make effective use of the available data and evidence is critical to VCS organisations </li></ul>
    4. 5. The groups - findings Wide range of approaches to data collection, management & analysis Sophistication of data management and analysis reflects organisational culture and business approach as much as size or client group All groups undertake some analysis of internal and external data on service uptake, trends in service delivery, needs of their client groups and demand for their services
    5. 6. 1. Monitoring info Issue : Lack of clarity about how monitoring information required by local government is used (grant/contract management siloed from needs assessment) Recommendation : Streamline monitoring or contract management data required of the voluntary and community sector - a common monitoring framework that feeds systematically into commissioning cycle Voluntary sector to respond in terms of more standardised data formats
    6. 7. 2. Needs Assessment Issue : VCS data used to plug gaps of needs assessment rather than as an integral part of the whole picture Recommendation : VCS data feeds systematically into needs assessment and the commissioning cycle More time needs for input from voluntary and community sector organisations VCS leadership to encourage proactive sector engagement in information sharing for needs assessment
    7. 8. 3. Outcome measures Issue : Intelligent Commissioning is based on outcome measures, but limited collective understanding of what this means Recommendation : Support Advice Partnership bid to be a pilot area for developing national standards for outcome measures and use as a basis for wider local work on outcome measures Establish cross-Partnership work on defining outcome measures and trial on a commissioning round by round basis, starting with Financial Inclusion, to tie in with national work
    8. 9. 4. City-wide data Issue : Opportunity to share information at a a systems level with an emphasis on service improvement. Cross-sector endeavour. Recommendation : Improved communication on city-wide intelligence ambitions and how existing strands of work are aligned to each other Involvement of all relevant partners in development of city-wide data sharing building on VCS-led work on data-sharing between partners VCS work on data-sharing within the sector should be brought together
    9. 10. 5. Social Value Issue : Sharing information doesn't equate to good services. Value of small, independent, local, or volunteer-led organisations should be recognised in commissioning. Duty to consider social value. Recommendation : BHCC makes a commitment to Social Value and sets out a clear way of implementing this into commissioning processes and decisions VCS work on defining and measuring social impact to be undertaken through Dialogue 50:50, building on previous work and existing skills within infrastructure organisations
    10. 11. Open data <ul><li>National context – Making Open Data Real consultation </li></ul><ul><li>Intent to open up much more of central government's data </li></ul><ul><li>Open data to be published on public services whoever the provider </li></ul><ul><li>Little in the consultation about non- commercial uses of data, or on how this will play out at a local level. </li></ul>
    11. 12. 6. Ambition on open data Issue : Turning a general commitment to open data into something useful for 'social economy' Recommendation : Clarify open data ambitions, including links to existing data sharing work Create links between sectors to use open data for service improvement Integration into other initiatives on City-wide intelligence.
    12. 13. 7. Understanding of open data Issue : Groups aware of concept of open data, but not yet clear on how it could be useful for them Limited knowledge of what data actually held by local govt Recommendation : Create a useable, accessible local inventory of public data bearing in mind a range of users and levels of technical skill Build on Brighton & Hove Open Data List List the main data-sources held but not published
    13. 14. 8. Use what already exists Issue : Groups can struggle to find & use existing data sources Recommendation : Strengthen publication of data on local populations & promote this to VCS partners VCS to consider the open data agenda in planning infrastructure support for the future VCS infrastructure groups (and / or CLG) commission a support resource to help vol orgs better use existing data & research
    14. 15. 9. Opening VCS data Issue : VCS have data useful for others (esp on service failure) which could be included in a city data store but significant issues Recommendation : CVSF partner in work on data platform, lead on how best feed in VCS data Commissioners & needs assessors to use all available data, including from new or non-traditional sources
    15. 16. 10. Wider issues Issue : Using local experience to input into open data consultation: Open data is a means to an end, not the end in itself 'Data users' are important Open data is not cost free Recommendation : Engage “data users” more closely in the open data process Staged approach, more collective thought about making open data useful, including support needs Transparency of process as well as openness of data
    16. 17. Your views Priorities? Tools? Your turn!
    17. 18. Finally... Next steps? Thanks: OCSI, especially Tom Smith CVSF, especially Emma Daniel BHCC, especially Paul Colbran Public-i for the filming