Season’s Greetings from OCSI

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Season’s Greetings


From all of the team at OCSI

2015 was the year of data.

High-profile debates raged over, safe harbour and ad blocking – each showing the value of data for better services and business models, and also the importance of public trust in how that data is shared and used. The UK’s first Chief Data Officer was appointed (although has since left the building), and open data surges by Defra and the Environment Agency were backed up by work by Cabinet Office and the Open Data Institute to continue unlocking value in government data. More locally, some great work by councils and housing associations helped shine a light on where data can be used to save money and deliver better services.

It has been an exciting year for OCSI too, supporting organisations working for social good in the UK and abroad as well as developing our growing team. The highlight of the year for me was (probably unsurprisingly) the publication of the Indices of Deprivation in September to widespread interest – even briefly becoming the number 1 news story on the BBC website.

But we’ve been keeping ourselves busy with other projects too:

Happy Christmas all, I look forward to working with you in 2016.

Tom Smith – Managing Director

Over the year we have been working closely with local authorities around the country discussing Local Insight and the benefits it can bring to teams.

Joint Strategic Needs Assessments (JSNAs) come up time and time again and are vital in providing a robust overview of health and well-being in local communities.

We are excited to be working with and supporting public health teams to produce their JSNAs through Local Insight by:

  • Providing interactive maps that display shaded data layers (for example prevalence rates or wider health determinants such as the Index of Multiple Deprivation), overlaid with a second data layer such as point location of support services
  • Giving access to more than 700 datasets for immediate mapping and reporting, plus the ability to securely upload local data
  • Allowing JSNA teams to define their own areas and see analysis and reports for these areas.
  • Creating in-depth area profile reports in MS Word for easy reuse in commissioning documents and presentations
  • Providing a secure login site for use by the JSNA team, with a public access site for local partners and service providers
If you would like to discuss how Local Insight could support your teams and register for a free trial of Local Insight, please get in touch.
One of our 2015 highlights was the publication of the Indices of Deprivation, which we had been working on for two years. Now that they have been out in the world for a few months, it has been great to see them being used as a valuable resource in better understanding local areas.We have been collecting case studies and stories of how the Indices of Deprivation have been used and publishing these on our resource hub, which we have developed to showcase how the Indices of Deprivation are used in a wide range of sectors.

From Premier League poverty and interactive maps to local authority analysis and research into mental health, there is a wealth of information to get your teeth into – and we are adding more articles all the time.

If you have any case studies or stories to share, please get in touch and sign up to the mailing list to be kept up to date with new articles.

Using data to make better decisions is one of our core beliefs, so we were very happy to be on the agenda for the ‘Using data as a policy maker’ event, which took place in Winchester last month. The event featured mini presentations showcasing real-life examples of open data being used to influence policy decisions.

OCSI Managing Director, Tom Smith spoke about our work on the Indices of Deprivation and Local Insight. The slides are now available on Slideshare.

In case you hadn’t noticed, we do love a good map at OCSI (this one of bears in Finland is a particular favourite). With Christmas fast approaching, we thought it only fitting to do a bit of festive mapping.Our research team have done a stellar job of mapping the origins of every Christmas Number 1 since 1952 and providing some analysis into Christmas Number 1 hotspots.

So settle down with a mince pie and take a look at which city nabs the top spot and see whether your home town features in the Christmas Number 1 hall of fame.

Proud to sponsor Brighton Chamber’s breakfasts

Although we are called Oxford Consultants for Social Inclusion, our offices are firmly rooted in Brighton and have been for years (we’re a spin out from Oxford University, hence the name).

The Brighton and Hove Chamber of Commerce is a valuable resource for many businesses in Brighton, providing support, advice and networking opportunities.

It was great to be able to give something back to the business community in Brighton & Hove and sponsor the Chamber breakfasts in November and December.


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