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Francis Maude: “I’d like to make FOI redundant”

Francis Maude: “I’d like to make FOI redundant”

Cabinet Office minister hopes open data will remove the need for the Freedom of Information Act because “people won’t have to ask”

Francis Maude has said that he would like to make the Freedom of Information Act, which allows citizens to request data and documents from the government, redundant by publishing government data sets online.

“I’d like to make Freedom of Information redundant, by pushing out so much [open] data that people won’t have to ask for it,” he said last night.

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Information Age | July 4th 2012

IBM contract details released

A previously secret multimillion-dollar contract between the provincial government and computer giant IBM was released in full to the public Tuesday.

The province backed down in an eight-year legal fight to keep parts of the contract from public view, saying it would not appeal a B.C. Supreme Court ruling last month that forced it to release all the information.

The B.C. Freedom of Information and Privacy Association, which picked up the fight for a copy of the contract in 2004, will be given the document in full. It was also posted on the chief information officer’s government web-site late Tuesday.

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Rob Shaw | Vancouver Sun | July 4th 2012-07-04

Chief of U.S. missile defense bullied staff, report says

The U.S. Missile Defense Agency’s chief routinely bullied his senior staff, chilling discussion of thorny issues in the multibillion-dollar program he runs, the U.S. Defense Department’s inspector general said in a report made public on Tuesday.

Army Lieutenant General Patrick O’Reilly, who has headed the Pentagon arm since November 2008, demeaned and belittled subordinates, making them reluctant “to speak up and raise issues during meetings with him,” said the 19-page report dated May 2.

A spokeswoman for the inspector general, Bridget Serchak, said such reports typically were made public only after receipt of at least three requests for them under the Freedom of Information Act.

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Reuters | July 4th 2012

The golden age of start-ups         

Richard Prime, founder of Sonovate, looks at how barriers to entry have dropped for today’s entrepreneurs and why simpler times were not necessarily better.

To substantiate this claim you only need to look at publicly accessible data. Our recent Freedom of Information request on start-up recruitment businesses, for example, revealed that the number of newly established agencies has been increasing year on year. In 2008 there were 1,080 start-ups, rising to 1,710  by – an increase of 58 per cent.

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Richard Prime | Growth Business | July 4th 2012-07-04

A whole lot of holes to fill

THE pothole epidemic in Colchester is twice as bad as it was last year, new figures show.

A Freedom of Information request has revealed 2,137 defective roads were reported in the first six months of this year.

A total of 2,526 were reported in the whole of 2011.

In some parts of the borough more potholes have been reported already in 2012 than in the whole of 2011.

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Ryan Jennings | Essex County Standard | July 4th 2012



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