https://gds.blog.gov.uk/2013/09/03/this-week-at-gds-45/

This week at GDS

Mike Beaven talks the report Smaller, Better, Faster, Stronger: Remaking government for the digital age, an upcoming Digital Advisory Board meeting, Thursday's Open Standards event, and more.

Matt:
Hello Mike.

Mike Beaven:
Hello there.

Matt:
Can you tell us a bit about what we've been up to today.

Mike:
So today's been a really good day. We've had an off-site meeting with the GDS senior management team where we've done a number of exercises. First we looked at the first 6 months of the fiscal year, what's been delivered against the plan, which was kind of terrifying because there seemed to be an awful lot of it. And then we've looked forward to the next 6 months, see what we've got left to do this year, and again there's a fair amount to do there. And then we've looked at where we think the issues are and where we can help each other to unblock any things that are going to get in our path between now and April next year. So a really good day for the team, a lot's been done but there's a hell of a lot left to do as well.

Matt:
Lots of other things going on this week as well.

Mike:
Yes, a few interesting events or announcements. There's a brilliant document being released by Policy Exchange around the future of government and digital government, which really throws some pretty challenging questions. I read it on Friday night with a glass of wine and it was a very good read, some very profound predictions about how government needs to operate so I'd recommend everyone takes a good look at it.

Also we're doing some work with our identity providers. So these guys are integral to providing the identity credentials for people who are using our platform, we've got a few suppliers now signed up: Digidentity, Experian, Mydex, the Post Office and Verizon, so there are some familiar names there and some very specialist names.

Matt:
We've got a couple of events coming up later this week as well.

Mike:
Yes, we have, so in the general running of our broader programme we've got one of our Digital Advisory Board meetings, which for people who don't know what that is, that's some of the great and good across industry and the digital space. So we have a session on Wednesday where we're going to be talking about the Identity Assurance programme and also about Digital Inclusion and how that work's progressing.

Matt:
And another event on Thursday evening as well.

Mike:
Yes, so we've got an event all about Open Standards on Thursday, so basically we'll be able to understand how standards get selected, they get debated and get through the whole process. So if you follow #OpenGDS you'll be able to look at that on Twitter as well.

Matt:
We've got a few new starters as well.

Mike:
Five of them actually. As ever, we expand, so a couple of new user researchers quite crucially: Pete Gale, who's joining the Transformation team looking at some of the BIS (Department for Business Innovation & Skills) exemplars and Esteban Olmedo, who's going to be working on GOV.UK.

Matt:
And one fond farewell.

Mike:
Yes, sadly, Nick Stenning is off to Berlin, which sounds very exotic, to join the Open Knowledge Foundation, so we'll miss him but wish him very well.

Matt:
Terrific. Until next time.

Mike:
Thank you very much.