On Thursday 25 June 15 Defra’s Secretary of State, Liz Truss, gave her first major speech of this new government at Unruly in the heart of London’s vibrant Tech City.
It’s probably not where you would expect to find the Environment Secretary but as she pointed out in the Q&A the environment, food and what happens in the countryside (we call that rural affairs) affects everyone everywhere, even in big cities.
The Secretary of State believes that Defra is the most data rich department in Whitehall and she wants to open up Defra’s data to create opportunities for businesses and our rural economy and to improve the quality of our natural environment. In fact she wants Defra to release 8000 datasets over the next 12 months.
She set out how she would like technology companies to use environmental data, in-combination with data from remote sensors (EG Copernicus) and other open data to bring a jolt of energy to the countryside, to increase rural productivity and improve the natural environment. The best way to find Defra’s data is via data.gov.uk.
There is a lot more detail in the full new article and speech on GOV.UK. Defra is setting up an Open Data Accelerator Programme and will continue releasing datasets via data.gov.uk. The Defra Digital blog will highlight the most significant releases along with case studies, and more so please subscribe for email alerts. You can contact Defra’s data team via firstname.lastname@example.org.