Westminster eForum

Since lockdown, we have been organising our full programme of conferences online. We will continue online until further notice, to ensure we play our part in helping our employees and delegates to remain safe during this time. We are pleased that so many key stakeholders, policymakers and other interested parties - both old friends and new delegates - are taking up the opportunity to discuss public policy issues and network at our impartial seminars. New events are coming on to our conference programme all the time. So there are plenty of opportunities for you to join us if you haven’t already, from wherever you are. For booking-related queries, or information on speaking, please email us at info@forumsupport.co.uk or contact us using one of the following numbers: +44 (0)7538736244 / +44 (0)7503591880 / +44 (0)7951044809.
For delegates already booked on, we will send you the online joining instructions (including links, event numbers and passwords) five working days before your conference. If you cannot find these in your inbox please email delegate.relations@forumsupport.co.uk

Next steps for the National Data Strategy - implementation priorities, privacy and public trust, and supporting economic growth and public service delivery

Morning, Tuesday, 9th March 2021

***Full conference taking place online***

This conference will examine next steps for the National Data Strategy (NDS) - and the Government’s priorities in its aims for growing the UK economy through the use of data, as well as for improving regulation around data protection and privacy.

Delegates will assess the proposals in the Strategy and key issues for implementation, with discussion on:

  • supporting business innovation and use of data and priorities for harnessing data to boost productivity and the economy
  • improving the use of data in the delivery of services at all levels of government
  • data protection, privacy and safeguarding
  • developing data skills
  • IP issues and the future of the international flow of data

The discussion is bringing together stakeholders with key policy officials who are due to attend from the Cabinet Office; DCMS; Ofcom; the CDEI; DfT; the Geospatial Commission; Government Banking; HMRC; Home Office; the IPO; the MOD; the NAO; the Serious Fraud Office; The Scottish Government; and the Welsh Government.

The agenda:

  • The Data Strategy and next steps for implementation
  • The use of data within government - improving usability, coordination, responsiveness, and service delivery
  • Data protection, privacy and safeguarding - intellectual property, early indications following transition from the EU, and regulatory priorities going forward
  • Developing data skills in the UK
  • Maximising the potential of data to boost the economy - supporting private sector innovation, closing labour market skills gaps, and improving productivity
  • Next steps for developing the international flow of data

Key areas for discussion:

  • data and economic growth:
    • the potential - assessing policy and strategic priorities for unlocking the value of data across the economy, developing the skills base, and supporting productivity
    • supporting better use of data to inform infrastructure development and need as outlined in the National Infrastructure Strategy
    • the way forward for developing a national digital twin of the UK’s infrastructure systems and built environment as also outlined in the Strategy
    • interoperability and access - options for policy and industry in improving data availability and standards
    • the UK data sector - options for supporting:
      • innovation and commercialisation of research in data-driven enterprises and services
      • growth in new and established businesses, research bodies and academic institutions involved in data services and R&D, and the UK’s international leadership position in the sector
  • data protection and privacy:
    • balancing strategic priories:
      • the policy drive to for data-driven economic growth and widespread uptake of digital technologies
      • the development of a strong and sustainable data protection regime that is able to adapt over time
    • business use of data:
      • encouraging best practice - including options for incentivising responsivity and transparency, and for further regulation and legislation
      • data literacy - latest thinking on ways to develop citizen empowerment and the skills and resources to effectively choose when to share personal data and how it is used
  • data use in government:
    • the new Government Chief Data Officer - priorities for their role in developing the approach across to the quality, coordination and use of data in government to improve services
    • coordination - creating joined-up data infrastructure with effective data sharing between organisations
    • efficiency - how to ensure that the collection and management of data results in streamlined and effective service delivery and minimises burden on organisational resources and capacity
    • public trust - priorities for:
      • ensuring strong data protection practices across the public sector
      • implementing best practice in clear and transparent communication on the collection, governance and use of personal data
  • data skills - how key challenges for developing data skills outlined in the NDS can be overcome, looking at:
    • a co-ordinated vision - what does it look like, and what are the roles of stakeholders in education, business and government in achieving it
    • priority skills - clarity on data skill sets most needed by the economy, and joining up the needs of employers with the aims of those entering education, training and the workforce
    • the education and training system:
      • education and qualifications providers - priorities for better integrating data skills into education provision and preparing those entering the jobs market for the data economy
      • industry and policymakers and regulators - options, including work placements and apprenticeships, for fostering the data and digital skills directly applicable to the workplace
    • data-skilled businesses - how organisations of all scales, including SMEs, can be supported in developing greater understanding and abilities in:
      • reducing inefficiencies and driving up quality and growth
      • investment decisions and understanding in leadership groups of organisational and operational strategy driven by the use of data
  • the UK’s future standing in the international data landscape:
    • life outside the EU - implications of outcomes of data adequacy arrangements following UK transition for European and global business links and flow of data
    • new relationships - next steps for developing effective international data sharing and partnerships with businesses, governments and agencies

Relevant developments:

  • UK National Data Strategy consultation - with government analysing feedback on whether the NDS proposals are fit for purpose in relation to data opportunities, challenges and potential trade-offs
  • the National Infrastructure Strategy - setting sets out plans for transformation across the UK
  • Enhancing the UK’s Geospatial Ecosystem - with development of UK location data market highlighted in the Geospatial Commission’s recent report on growing the geospatial economy
  • Addressing trust in public sector data use - the CDEI report highlighting the importance of alignment with societal values and expectations underpinned by consistency and clear communication
  • Introducing the Government Data Quality Hub:
    • rebranding of the Government Statistical Service Quality Centre as the DQHub, with a wider remit to help improve data quality and analysis across government
    • The Government Data Quality Framework - from the DQHub with data quality action plans, guidance on metadata, and an introduction to data maturity models
  • skills and leadership in government:
    • the ONS’s Data Science Campus training 500 data analysts across the public sector in cutting edge data science and tech fellowships to be offered each year in Downing Street
    • appointment of a Government Chief Data Officer to lead a whole-government approach to transform the use of data in government
  • The future of citizen data systems - the Government Office for Science report of the way citizen data is governed, controlled and used in the UK and other countries, and current trends
  • Online Harms White Paper - setting out plans for improving the regulatory landscape for combatting online harms and protecting personal data
  • the Digital Strategy - which will outline further proposals for how the government will support a digital drive for growth
  • Government Technology Innovation Strategy - which set out plans for improving the use of data and technology across government
  • Industrial Strategy: building a Britain fit for the future - aiming to make the UK the world’s most innovative economy as well as to spearhead the use of emerging technologies
  • NHS COVID-19 app - promoting concerns from some around increased data sharing and privacy, and impact on the potential effectiveness of the Government’s test and trace strategy

Policy officials attending:

Our forums are known for attracting strong interest from policymakers and stakeholders. Places have been reserved by officials from the Cabinet Office; the Centre For Data Ethics and Innovation; DCMS; the Department for Transport; the Geospatial Commission; Government Banking; HM Revenue & Customs; the Home Office; the Intellectual Property Office; the Ministry of Defence; the National Audit Office; Ofcom; the Serious Fraud Office; The Scottish Government; and the Welsh Government.

Overall, we expect speakers and other delegates to be an informed group including Members of both Houses of Parliament, senior government and regulatory officials involved in this area of policy, as well as digital platforms and online businesses, consumer technology companies, software and app developers, representatives of data-rich industries including utilities, healthcare, pharmaceuticals, logistics and finance, companies involved in the development of new technologies such as AI, cyber security and data protection companies, the technology and telecoms industries, organisations and individuals representing consumer and citizen views, regulators, academics and commentators, consultants and financial analysts, and legal experts, together with reporters from the national and specialist media.

This is a full-scale conference taking place online***

  • full, four-hour programme including comfort breaks - you’ll also get a full recording and transcript to refer back to
  • information-rich discussion involving key policymakers and stakeholders
  • conference materials provided in advance, including speaker biographies
  • speakers presenting via webcam, accompanied by slides if they wish, using the Cisco WebEx professional online conference platform (easy for delegates - we’ll provide full details)
  • opportunities for live delegate questions and comments with all speakers
  • a recording of the addresses, all slides cleared by speakers, and further materials, is made available to all delegates afterwards as a permanent record of the proceedings
  • delegates are able to add their own written comments and articles following the conference, to be distributed to all attendees and more widely
  • networking too - there will be opportunities for delegates to e-meet and interact - we’ll tell you how!

Full information and guidance on how to take part will be sent to delegates before the conference

Keynote Speakers

Phil Earl

Deputy Director, Data Strategy, Implementation and Evidence, DCMS

Ray Eitel-Porter

Chair, Data Skills Taskforce and Managing Director, Accenture


Fedelma Good

Director, Data Protection Strategy, Legal and Compliance Services, PwC

Dr Mahlet Zimeta

Head of Public Policy, The Open Data Institute

Senior speaker confirmed from Privacy International

Daniel Wilson

Policy and Public Affairs Director, BT

Yvonne Gallagher

Digital Director, National Audit Office

Gavin Freeguard

Programme Director, Head of Data and Transparency, Institute for Government

Gayle McFarlane

Partner, Eversheds Sutherland