UK Chancellor Pushes for Open Data

UK Chancellor George Osborne has announced that the government is preparing a major push for open data, making public sector data accessible to the private sector and individuals.

Osborne, who made the announcement in his Autumn Statement, also revealed that the government plans to open an Open Data Institute at London's Silicon Roundabout, which will help fuel its efforts for open data.

Under the government's new open data policy, NHS, transport, weather and house prices data will be freely available to the private sector, developers in particular, to make use of the data and offer information based services to the public.

According to an article on The Guardian, the government believes making public sector data more accessible will result in increased investment in digital and media technology, fuel development in business logistics and increase investment by entrepreneurs in application development.

The government also said that making NHS data accessible would fuel growth in medical research.

"Patients will benefit directly from our efforts to make health data transparent and easy to use by the medical research community. This will fuel advances in treatment, as well as positioning this country as a centre of excellence for research," said health secretary Andrew Lansley.