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Showing posts from February, 2016

Building a standard for digital and design

As you may have read, we've been working with the Government Digital Service (GDS) to build a standard for digital and design in local government.

Who's we? A collection of councils bought together through LocalGov Digital.

Incidentally, I think 2016 will be the year local government digital teams start working more closely with GDS (and I've purposely phrased it this way) around common services, standards and registers, but that's topic for another post.

What's the benefit of working to a common standard you might ask:
Where services are produced by councils it enables peer review, similar to a Digital by Default Assessment.Where services are procured by councils it enables collective bargaining power. A group of councils working to the same standard speak much louder than one, empowering them to stand up for the user and demand products and services they purchase meet user need.It enables greater collaboration, with groups of councils working on common services,…

Be the A-Team

The A-Team is a bad TV fiction (and an even worse film) about crack commando unit which was sent to prison by a military court for a crime they didn't commit. This isn't an article about which is the best absurd American 80s action drama (surely that prize goes to Automan), nor is it a peppy piece about being the best you can as part of an "A team".

It was this question from Dave Briggs, how much does your technology define what you do that made me think of the A-Team.

Technology defines everything from communication, to music, even to the make-up of towns and cities, in fact I'd go as far as since the Industrial Revolution it defines our society. Dave was focusing on how technology influences organisations though, so where do the A-Team come in?

The TV show was formulaic and one aspect of this was at some point the team would be captured and imprisoned somewhere containing a collection of varied but seemingly useless junk. Sometimes, delivering user centred dig…

LocalGov Digital by Default Standard Day

On Friday I helped run a day of workshops and talks at the Government Digital Service (GDS). Firstly I'd like to thank Zuz Kopeka, Olivia Neal and everyone at GDS for their time both organising the event and on the day itself.

It was a follow up to attending a Digital by Default Assessment back in October and I wanted to see what appetite there was to use the Standard, or a version of it in local government. The answer it seems, is a lot. For example twice as many people expressed an interest in coming as we had space for and we had attendees from Cornwall to Gateshead, and Liverpool to Canterbury turn up all taking a day out of their busy schedule.

This is testament not to the pull of LocalGov Digital, but both the respect for GDS that is held in local government and the fact that there's a real grass roots desire to collaborate amongst many digital teams working in councils.

I put together a Storify on what people tweeted about the event, and the positive attitude of all con…