inquiry into government IT

So today saw the first oral evidence session of the House of Commons Public Administration Select Committee(PASC) inquiry into government IT.

There were two panels of witnesses, namely Professor Helen Margetts and Dr Ian Brown (both from the Oxford Internet Institute), Dr Edgar Whitley (London School of Economics), Professor Nigel Shadbolt (University of Southampton) and Sir Ian Magee (Institute for Government). It was available live over Parliament’s streaming service, although at least one organisation experienced problems watching the event live. So much for interoperability and open standards. It’s now available here.

Note that this video requires Silverlight / Moonlight – although I’m not sure why it’s quite so restricted given that transcoding is relatively simple these days and therefore it would be nice to have it available in a range of formats and plug-ins (or indeed HTML5). Perhaps that’s something else I should talk to Parliament about?

However, getting out of the technical weeds, also worth noting is that Bernard Jenkin MP, Chair of the Committee, posted a blog earlier today here setting out the background to, and thinking behind, what the inquiry is hoping to address.

There’s a busy few weeks ahead, taking more oral evidence, weighing the written evidence (54 submissions in total) already received, and undertaking a variety of background fact finding about baseline statistics, finances and management information. Today’s session got things off to a good start. So here’s to the next few weeks.

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