An introduction from Antonio Acuna, new Head of Data.gov.uk

The following guest post is an introduction to the Open Knowledge Community from the new head of data.gov.uk, Antonio Acuna.

I have recently joined the Transparency team at the Cabinet Office as
Head of Data.gov.uk. Having previously worked delivering IT projects
in Defra, such as the Noise Mapping England Project, and having worked
as director of several digital companies in the private sector before
that, I find the challenges and opportunities that the open data
agenda brings to be refreshing, exciting, and most of all inspiring.

Screenshot of data.gov.uk

Data.gov.uk has had a short but illustrious past, ranking high amongst
the open data initiatives around the world, what still is a ‘beta’
site has proven the principle of a transparent government and the
values of open data. Now it is time for that little beta label to
leave the site and hopefully, in the near future, become a certified
member of the worldwide data community. We have plans to streamline
many of the aspects that have made the site what it is; improve search,
bring in a thematic structure to the catalog, re-launch our
communication channels with developers and publishers, improve data
quality, and lean up and improve code and infrastructure amongst
other things.

We have already begun to utilize the site to reach out to our wider
user base, by hosting, for example, the open data consultation. The
‘Making open data real’ consultation
is a fundamental step in
gathering your views about what matters and what should be our
direction for open data. It is a fundamental aspect of participatory
democracy and a real opportunity to make your views count.

Data.gov.uk is there for everyone and we encourage all to pay us a
visit. Share an idea, comment on a dataset, tell us what’s on your
mind or simply peruse our catalog or link up to some of the great
applications made using our data that are showcased on the site. We have made
it easy for you to talk to us and almost everywhere in the site you
get a chance to quickly tell us what you think. We value your input
and we love to hear from you, after all, it was with you in mind that
we created the site.