The UK government has solidified plans to create an Open Data Institute (ODI) that could be open by September of this year. It aims to support start-ups and small businesses using publicly available datasets so that to have a positive effect on economic growth. It plans also to involve businesses, the public sector and academic institutions with this ODI and then hopes that it will serve to support greater cooperation, integration and bridge building between them as well as the ability to better exploit economic opportunities around open data. For developing this initiative, the government has been helped by the government’s innovation agency, the Technology Strategy Board and has committed up to £10 million over five years to support the institute. It is hoped this will be a precursor to matched funding from the private sector.
"We are at the very beginning of the journey. We have an incorporated company, a promise of funds and a huge challenge. We are as yet only three people - but over the course of the next four months we will recruit great staff, procure exciting premises and launch an ambitious programme of work. We are publishing our implementation plan that sets out initial priorities along with a more detailed business plan that details our programme of work and the projected costs," the ODI said on its website this week.
Also announced was the ODI’s Jump Start scheme for UK students. The ODI will provide technical and business support for ultra early start-ups that have significant open data potential and offer them an opportunity to develop their business ideas with the support of the ODI for up to a year. "We will be a place that develops the very best UK talents in open data. A focal point where current and future entrepreneurs and developers, technologists and creatives meet, share ideas, make things happen and drive growth." said ODI.