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Data literacy: helping non-data specialists make the most of data science

https://gds.blog.gov.uk/2016/04/27/data-literacy-helping-non-data-specialists-make-the-most-of-data-science/

Data literacy has a vital role to play in developing government policy and in delivering services that meet the needs of people across the UK.

GDS’s Data Group has a team of data scientists, part of a growing cross-government community, using these new techniques to bring new insights to address complex challenges and improve delivery.

However, if we are to get data science to become part of the everyday toolkit of government we need to ensure that the opportunities of using these techniques are understood and taken up by those outside of the data scientist community.

Therefore, we’re also undertaking work to help those who aren’t data scientists in government make the most of the opportunities that these new techniques have for the delivery of their services and the development of policy.

As ever we’re starting with a discovery phase to understand the breadth of potential users, what they need to know about data science, and how they want to receive this information. This will help us to make sure that any products we develop are based on real user needs of people in government.

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At the same time we’ll pull together potential content based on the work of data science specialists both here and across government. We want to identify the areas they believe will be most helpful to colleagues from different working backgrounds.

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