More than 2,500 batches of Government data have been published on a newly-launched website designed to allow people to create new applications based on that information
Information on everything from traffic to house prices to local services and health services has been made available in formats that allow for re-use. The Government said that it hopes that people will create useful online tools based on the data.
"Freeing up public data will create major new opportunities for businesses," said Stephen Timms, Minister for Digital Britain. "By allowing industry to use data creatively they can develop new services and generate economic value from it. This is a tremendous opportunity for UK firms to secure better value for money in service delivery and to develop innovative services which will help to grow the economy.”
The Government said that already applications have been built showing motorway traffic patterns over the last 10 years; school results in England and Wales; and 'postcode newspapers' informing new residents of services available in the area.
World Wide Web inventor Sir Tim Berners-Lee advised the Government on the project and said that the project will be politically as well as practically useful.
"Making public data available for re-use is about increasing accountability and transparency," he said. "Government data should be a public resource. By releasing it, we can unlock new ideas for delivering public services, help communities and society work better, and let talented entrepreneurs and engineers create new businesses and services."
The Government has committed to a policy of opening up data to the public for their examination and use. It said that it is acting on a commitment to release more statistical and health data to the public.