Big Data in government: challenges and opportunities

Reform is holding a high level conference on the theme ‘Big Data in government: challenges and opportunities’.

Big data, defined as one of the UK’s Eight Greatest Technologies, has far-reaching transformative powers. It is a driver of productivity both in the public and private sector. Data-driven companies perform better and increasing the use of data amongst the least data-savvy ones would induce a 3 per cent productivity boost, according to Nesta. Big data has the power to transform the way in which government develops and carries out policies. It can change the type of evidence available for policy makers and therefore allow for better evidence-based decision-making. Big data can help deliver better services and realise savings.

Despite its potential, the expansion of big data faces several challenges. Sciencewise has found that public perception and understanding of the use of personal data is limited. Government needs to address this data trust issue if it is to unleash the full potential of big data. Other barriers such as organisational culture and skills are also preventing the expansion of big data.

Reform is delighted that John Manzoni, Chief Executive of the Civil Service and Permanent Secretary at the Cabinet Office, will deliver the keynote speech exploring the challenges and opportunities that Big Data can present to government. This conference will also explore the implications of Big Data in the areas of: public trust and attitudes; health and criminal justice.

Other speakers include:

  • Hetan Shah, Executive Director, The Royal Statistical Society
  • Laura Citron, Managing Director, Government & Public Sector Practice, WPP
  • Dr Mark Thompson, Group Strategy Director, Methods and Senior Lecturer in Information Systems Judge Business School, University of Cambridge
  • Pete Cummings, Director, Partners and Government EMEA, Adobe
  • Daniel Ray, Data Science Director, NHS Digital
  • Dr Lydia Drumright, University Lecturer in Clinical Informatics, University of Cambridge
  • Jeremy Atkins, Big Data Consulting Sales manager, EMEA, HPE
  • Dr Nasrin Hafezparast, Co-Founder and Chief Technology Officer, Outcomes Based Healthcare
  • Andy Hill, Detective Chief Superintendent, West Midlands Police
  • James Slessor, Managing Director, Health and Public Sector and Global Policing Lead, Accenture
  • Dr Peter Langmead-Jones, Head of Better Inspection, Her Majesty’s Inspectorate of Constabulary (HMIC)

This conference is kindly being supported by:


020 7799 6699

21 February 2017
08.00 - 12.40

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