Northumbrian lead the way with open data

Northumbrian Water has become the first water company to publish their open data strategy under an open licence.

By publishing the strategy openly, the water company aims to encourage others to do the same as well as drive collaboration in helping to solve some of the biggest challenges faced by the industry and beyond.

The strategy, and it’s oversight by the Northumbrian Water Group’s Executive Leadership team, was cited as an example of good practice in the recently-published Ofwat assessment on Open Data Progress in the Water Industry.

It sets out the company’s aspirations, ambition and commitment to driving value for its customers, society and environment through opening up more of its data.

Nigel Watson, Group Information Services Director, from Northumbrian Water, said: “Although we do have a long track record of sharing data through collaborative projects and the many hacks we have hosted at our Innovation Festivals, our new strategy enables us to take a step further to broaden the reach and impact of our data.”

“Through this we expect to stimulate even more open innovation to the ultimate benefit of our customers and the regions that we serve.”

Work is already underway to bring the strategy to life through the delivery of the year one plan.

This includes engaging with stakeholders to identify high value datasets and challenges as well as putting in place processes which make it easy for users to discover, understand and access datasets, seek support and provide feedback.

Processes are also being put in place to ensure the risks associated with opening up data, such as privacy and security are robustly managed.

Nigel added: “We were also delighted to receive confirmation recently of delivery phase funding for Stream from Ofwat’s Water Breakthrough Challenge Fund.

“Stream is an initiative that will enable all water companies to efficiently publish data in a way that facilitates the joining up of individual company data to create larger, national datasets.

“We have been delighted to act as the lead organisation on this initiative, and look forward to working with all the participating companies over the coming months to bring this to life.”

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