On 24 March, the United Kingdom appointed Mike Bracken as its first Government Chief Data Officer. Bracken “will be responsible for developing a new Government Data Standard, championing open data, and encouraging the use of data in the decision-making process”, the Government Digital Service (GDS) said in a statement. The UK is the second EU Member State to take this step - France appointed a CDO last September.
The new position should lead to greater data analysis skills and capability across the government. Bracken will remain in his current role, as chief of the GDS.
“I’m delighted to announce that Mike Bracken who has spearheaded this government’s digital revolution will also become the Government’s Chief Data Officer. He is the ideal person to take our already world-leading approach to open data even further, while strengthening data analysis skills in Whitehall”, Minister for the Cabinet Office Francis Maude, is quoted as saying in the GDS statement.
Open data champions
The announcement lists sixteen local and regional authorities, that GDS says are setting the standard in open data and transparency. The sixteen have been recognised as Open Data Champions.
France in September, appointing as CDO Henri Verdier, the director of Etalab, which runs the Inter-ministerial open data portal, data.gouv.fr. On the same day as the UK’s announcement, US President Barack Obama also named the first US Chief Digital Officer, appointing Jason Goldman, formerly VP of product at Twitter and product manager at Google.