Data and securityGovernment looks to unlock the value of location data

Government looks to unlock the value of location data

Geospatial Commission to invest £5m to help unlock the value of geospatial data held by its six partner bodies

The Geospatial Commission is to invest £5 million to help unlock the value of geospatial data held by its six partner organisations – the British Geological Survey, Coal Authority, HM Land Registry, Ordnance Survey, UK Hydrographic Office and the Valuation Office Agency. The money is the first investment from the Geospatial Commission’s £80 million two-year budget.

Location information, or geospatial data, is changing the way we see the world and live our lives – from helping us to avoid traffic jams to easily finding local services or deciding where to buy a house: through cutting edge analysis of GPS, satellite photography and historical data.

David Lidington, Chancellor of the Duchy of Lancaster said: “Our modern Industrial Strategy will secure Britain’s position as a world-leader in digital innovation and this government is committed to providing more opportunities for tech businesses – including small firms – to thrive, as well as access public procurement opportunities.

“Through emerging technologies, our Geospatial and GovTech funding will elevate British companies onto a global market and help to deliver new services to improve people’s lives.”

The work of the Geospatial Commission, supported by £40 million of new funding in each of the next two years, will drive the move to use this data more productively – unlocking up to £11 billion of extra value for the economy every year.

Geospatial data is an increasingly valuable tool for businesses and public sector organisations, helping them to make better decisions. That could range from tackling crime hotspots or finding the quickest routes for emergency services to deciding where best to locate supply chains.

By improving the quality of key publicly held data and making it easier to access and use, the government will enable the private sector to develop new innovations and applications.

The announcement comes before the launch on 9th October of the next round of the £20 million GovTech Catalyst programme, in which public sector organisations are invited to submit challenges they think might be solved by innovative use of emerging technologies. Both the government’s Geospatial and GovTech funding is aimed at driving forward Britain as a digital and data leader.

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