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Alphagov musings
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Alphagov musings

A few weeks before it launched, Tom Loosemore kindly invited me over for a preview of the Alphagov prototype. I was given a whirlwind tour of their agile process and some of the thinking behind their work. Not to mention a very dark – and thick – cup of coffee. Hey, I’m not complaining. I...

Walking the line between Skunkworks and Business as Usual
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Walking the line between Skunkworks and Business as Usual

Several times recently I’ve heard the word ‘skunkworks‘ mentioned. Most recently it was in a Guardian interview with Mark O’neill, the ‘leader of the government’s IT ‘skunkworks’ team – as well as CIO of two prominent UK Government departments. I have to admit to being fascinated by the idea of a skunkworks capability in Government....

Digital helps Government reduce costs… really?
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Digital helps Government reduce costs… really?

I find myself thinking about Government’s desire to reduce costs by ‘going digital.’ It’s as though the very notion of something being online instantly results in reduced effort and cost and provides a useful and usable service to Citizens. In recent years, Government has seen digital as a means of reducing ‘avoidable contact’ – that...

FutureGov feat. Measurement Camp
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FutureGov feat. Measurement Camp

Today I attended the FutureGov meets Measurement Camp session held at Edelman in Victoria. It was a mix of some of the usual (and always pleasant to see) faces and a lot of faces I didn’t recognise – always a bonus! And Edelman provided a pleasant space and plenty of tea and coffee to keep...

UK Govcamp was good fun. What happens next?
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UK Govcamp was good fun. What happens next?

I’ve obviously waited a couple of weeks to write this. I suppose I didn’t want it to feel like a recap of the event by writing it within a day or so, or something that followed on the heels of a torrent of blog posts over the following week – some of which I’ve read,...

Open data is not a panacea – but it is a start
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Open data is not a panacea – but it is a start

Today the UK Government officially launches its effort to open up UK data. This is a project that I am proud to have even a small part in developing. In certain circles there is a real fervour around the release of data, this being the essential ingredient missing to give citizens the power to manage...

Built in 2 weeks – the Pendulum swings
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Built in 2 weeks – the Pendulum swings

Q: How long should it take to develop a new digital product? A: As long as it takes to get it right – within the limits of time, scope and budget (oh, and don’t forget the needs of the user… and the organisation) I am a long-time believer in the User-Centred Design process. For me...