About Nesta

Nesta is an innovation foundation. For us, innovation means turning bold ideas into reality and changing lives for the better. We use our expertise, skills and funding in areas where there are big challenges facing society.

Need help starting your data project in local government?

Nesta and the LGA are developing an interactive tool to help councils use data better

Local councils and other public sector organisations are increasingly experimenting with data to make changes to services, inform decision making, and make their communities a better place. However, using data to solve local challenges is rarely a  straightforward process. As Nesta’s Wise Council research highlighted - and our pilots of offices of data analytics confirmed first-hand - many councils exploring smarter uses of data are encountering similar issues and questions along the way.

The commonality of these challenges suggests that there is scope for the development of practical tools to assist the sector in pursuing more data-driven solutions. Last year, we produced a prototype of a UK-specific local government data maturity framework in our Wise Council report (see Appendix 2). This was designed to help councils assess project readiness and offer guidance on advancing along their journey to better data use.

This month, we teamed up with the Local Government Association again to turn this static framework  into a useful and interactive tool to support data innovation in local government. The purpose of the tool is to give councils practical, actionable advice toward smarter use of data.

Over the coming months we will be working with the local government sector to find out which type of tool, and which type of content, would be most effective in supporting data innovation. We hope the tool will be live in spring 2018.

We want to hear from you

We will be running two workshops in early 2018 in which we want to discover and explore the user requirements of council officers undertaking data projects.

We are looking for local authority officers and managers who work with data for policy, strategy and transformation work to come to these workshops and help us understand what would most benefit the sector.

The workshops are scheduled for:

9th January, 1-4pm, Sheffield Town Hall

12th January, 10-1pm, Nesta offices, London

If you would like to express an interest in attending these workshops, or in the project more generally, please email [email protected]

Image Credit - Ferran Porta via Flickr CC


Nevena Dragicevic

Nevena Dragicevic

Nevena Dragicevic

Nevena was a programme manager in the Government Innovation team, working on piloting Offices of Data Analytics in UK city regions. Previously, Nevena worked as a Senior Policy Analyst…

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Tom Symons

Tom Symons

Tom Symons

Deputy Director, fairer start mission

Tom is the deputy mission director for the fairer start mission at Nesta.

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