Platform shares data impact thinking

As GDPR comes into effect, non-profit Corsham Institute this week deploys its ‘observatory’ policy and innovation platform to share ideas on data and society – alongside a survey showing worryingly low levels of public understanding on data rights.

OCSappThe Corsham Institute’s Observatory for a Connected Society platform offers commentary and themed digests bringing together latest research and insight on key issues.

With GDPR due to come into effect on May 25, the platform’s focus is a fortnight of GDPR-linked activity, with commentary on data from different perspectives, alongside new research on the issue.

The institute created the observatory jointly with European research body RAND Europe. It offers a free app and web platform, along with a new public-facing community function allowing comments.

Observatory contributors on the data issue include Wellcome Trust, techUK and the Federation of Small Businesses.

“As technology-driven change accelerates, it is transforming all parts of our daily life: from how we communicate and receive news and information, to how we shop, bank and access public services. Our connected society brings huge opportunities, but also significant challenges,” explains CI.

“The Observatory for a Connected Society enables policymakers, private and public sector leaders, academics and researchers to access everything they need to know about the most important tech and digital issues in society.”

In a new test of public opinion – following this spring’s Facebook/Cambridge Analytica scandal – the institute has found that, while 80% said events had made them think more about their data and what they share online, only 19% knew a lot about how to use their data rights.

The survey was conducted locally in Corsham as part of CI’s Your Data, Your Rights trust initiative.

In a blog post, Corsham Institute chief executive Rachel Neaman said the organisation would work with community groups on new information to help people better understand their digital rights.

The Observatory for a Connected Society app is available on iOS from iTunes.