Skip to main content

Geographical Information Systems

Volume 472: debated on Tuesday 26 February 2008

To ask the Secretary of State for Communities and Local Government how many private sector companies were consulted on the draft of the UK location strategy before it was submitted to Ministers. (188655)

The process of drafting the UK Location Strategy involved two consultation phases:

(i) Initial information gathering and consultation arranged and facilitated by consultants who were commissioned by the UK Geographic Information Panel (GI Panel) to draft the strategy;

(ii) Wide consultation across Government during preparation and iteration of the draft, and following recognition that it was appropriate for the strategy to focus on public sector information.

During the first consultation phase, the consultants arranged three workshop sessions. An open invitation to participate was extended for the first of these events. It was attended by over 90 delegates of whom more than 50 per cent. were from the private sector. Two further closed sessions involved delegates selected and invited by the consultants because of their personal knowledge and expertise: 16 of the 44 invitees to these sessions were employed in the private sector. The consultants also extended an open invitation for further contributions via the GI Panel website and invited written submissions and the opportunity for personal interview by one of the consultants. The consultants received a number of written statements including contributions from three private sector trade associations and 13 individuals.

In addition, the GI Panel itself includes representatives from the Association of British Insurers, the Demographic User Group, the Royal Institution of Chartered Surveyors, and the Association for Geographic Information, together representing the views of the wider UK geographic information, including over 50,000 companies and individual professionals from the private sector.