Cybermoor aims to develop new ways for rural communities to access, analyse and use open data through a Community Data Explorer (CDE).  As the Government encourages more communities to take control of their local services and assets, its important that communities have the best available data to inform their decision making.  This innovative project worked with a rural community to identify the data required and develop ways it can be visualised to make it as compelling as possible.

crime dataThis project combines Cybermoor’s award winning digital community engagement methodology with technology partner Swirrl’s expertise in opening up and visualising open data.  The project identified priority data sets in the community (planning and crime), obtained access to the data, cleaned the data and developed an API.  We delivered visualisations of 2 data sets and evaluate how community engage with them. 

Project Description

What is the project challenge?

With the government's push towards localism – such as the right to build, communities need to understand publicly available data before they can make informed decisions. For example Councils now publish data on all expenditure over £500, but this is often difficult to analyse and understand. Community Data Explorer will demystify this available open data, working with a rural community, to find ways of visualising information, to help shape how their public services are delivered.

What new digital technology is developing?

Community Data Explorer will create an app to enable the community of Alston moor and other rural communities to analyse data and take control of their local services and assets. The project will explore possibilities for delivering services differently and enable citizens to develop new skills to improve the workforce. Through the project local residents will identify priority data sets in the community, obtain access to the data, clean the data and develop an API (application programming interface). These apps will form the heart of a “Community Data Explorer” app for local authorities.

What are the intended impacts?

Visualising public data in compelling ways can make community members more aware of the possibility of delivering new services. By developing a greater understanding of data and analysis, citizens can develop new skills, understanding what data is available, and what they can expect to achieve.



 2013 to Summer 2014

 Web links

 Community Data Explorer

 Crime Report Data

 Planning Report Data


 UK, Catalyst (Lancaster University), Swirrl