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A report from Cardiff University reveals the extent to which public service provision is now being influenced by data analytics.
The study, Data Scores as Governance, represents the culmination of a year-long research project compiled by the School of Journalism, Media and Culture's Data Justice Lab.
Researchers - Data - Systems - Government - Services
Researchers studied data systems of government services across the UK to assess the extent to which decisions about individuals are being made by data scores and algorithms. They also conducted interviews with employees working in the field to find out how information gathered about people they come into contact with is used and distributed.
Their findings indicate that data collection and data sharing across local councils and government departments is now widespread.
Data - Justice - Lab - Co-Director - Dr
Data Justice Lab Co-Director Dr. Arne Hintz said: "We've become accustomed to our data being used online to decide which adverts or social media posts we should see. But for the first time, our research shows the extent to which our data is being used to decide how we are treated by public services.
Co-director Dr. Joanna Redden added: "In most cases, we found data systems had been implemented in response to austerity measures as a way of prioritising resources."
Scores - Vulnerability - Crime - Trend - Report
Assigning 'risk scores' around vulnerability and crime, in particular, is a growing trend, the report's authors note.
For example, Avon and Somerset Police's Qlik Sense system was first piloted in 2016 and now has over 30 applications across teams. It serves as both a performance assessment tool and a predictive policing tool. The platform creates profiles of any individual that has interactions with officers, before assessing their level of...
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