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Places Database

Volume 455: debated on Thursday 18 January 2007

To ask the Secretary of State for Communities and Local Government what the (a) purpose, (b) function and (c) budget of the new Places database is. (114520)

‘Places’ has been developed as the central warehouse for all place-related data held by Communities and Local Government. It is available on the department’s intranet and its purpose is to enable staff to easily access a comprehensive range of information across regions, local authorities, wards and more local areas.

The Places database performs a number of functions including:

acting as a key statistical analysis and management information tool in support of the departmental policy and decision making processes;

contributing to more efficient management of departmental data and IT resources; and,

providing a local area database capable of adapting to the changing needs of the department without the need for significant redevelopment.

The Places database cost £675,000 (excl. VAT) to develop and has part-year maintenance costs for 2006-07 of up to £168,000 (excl. VAT). It will achieve efficiency gains through consolidating several existing separately maintained databases and through staff spending less time on collating data from a wide variety of sources.