The report explores how to bring the public into the heart of decision-making about what data and information public service providers collect, analyse and share as they develop more effective and efficient public services.

It has never been more important to have open and frank conversations with the public about the use of the data held about them. Engagement is a critical component for developing a trustworthy system for the collection, use and sharing of data for the purposes of effective public service delivery.

Core features from various engagement methods, including Citizens’ Juries and Distributed Dialogues, could be used to engage the public on data sharing and its use for public benefit.

Read the report here (750KB, PDF)

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Background to the report

Involve, the Carnegie UK Trust and Understanding Patient Data published the Data for Public Benefit Report in April 2018.

The key findings from this report emphasised a need for government organisations to test for purposeful, proportionate and responsible use of data should they want to increase data and information sharing in their organisations. The report developed a framework to help public service providers to do this.

Involve and the Carnegie UK Trust then invited local and central government representatives to interrogate and respond to the report and framework at a workshop in September 2018.

They identified five areas where the framework in the report could support public service providers in assessing data and information sharing initiatives: identifying purpose, decision-making, partnership working, best practice and communications.

Key research questions to explore further with the public on data and information sharing identified by attendees can be categorised around: Purpose, Acceptability, Implementation and Resourcing.

Core features from Citizens’ Jury, Citizens’ Panel & Distributed Dialogue engagement methods were highlighted as useful for engaging the public on data sharing and include: a structured process; ability to tailor questions; simple to implement & sustain; & a grassroots approach.

Involve and interested local authorities are now planning the next stage of this work to test these conclusions through engaging members of the public directly around potential new data sharing initiatives.