The ODI’s data literacy programme is on a quest: to provide knowledge for everyone

2021 is an exciting time at the ODI as we launch our new programmes of work. I’m proud to be leading the data literacy programme which has big ambitions for the coming years.

Our tagline at the ODI is knowledge for everyone

This starts with enabling everyone to develop good data literacy. By this we don’t mean data skills, or how to drive a spreadsheet. Data literacy is the ability to think critically about data and how it is collected, used and shared. 

We’re pleased the UK government has now recognised the importance of data literacy, alongside data skills in our society.

Improving data literacy in leaders

This year, one of our main focuses will be leaders. They’re a key audience of ours, so it’s important that they get to know, and understand the important role data plays within an organisation. And that it’s their responsibility to support workforces. 

Through our partnership with the Institute for Directors we’ll be upskilling company directors in data governance and how to build strong data infrastructures.

Professionalising data ethics

We’ve also launched our Data Ethics Facilitators programme. Through this programme we’ll be looking to establish a network of data ethics professionals who can then help organisations put data ethics into practise.

Bringing data literacy to life online

COVID-19 may have forced us all online, but as usual we saw this as an opportunity to reach audiences in more countries. Delivering online training programmes is a lot different to face to face and a lot of work has to be put in to ensure they are not ‘death by powerpoint’. 

Over the past year, we have delivered our entire set of training programmes online and our feedback rating has actually increased! I wonder if this was a result of us making our online board game, Datopolis?

We’ve also found that people love using our free, downloadable ODI tools, and helpful assets.

Introducing new online experiences

As part of the effort to improve our online experiences we’ve also developed an interactive version of the ODI Data Ethics Canvas. Excitingly this appears to have real potential to help organisations put data ethics into practice, identifying priority actions – and helping them make decisions about how to minimise harmful impacts from data. 

We’re trialling several product offerings, alongside colleagues in the data assurance programme, using the interactive canvas. If you’d like to hear about opportunities to help us test these it’s easy – simply register your interest here.

So, what’s next for the Data Literacy programme?

Looking to the future, we’re planning to revamp many of our products this year, including our free eLearning

We’ll also be launching a new learning experience platform, and partnering with more organisations to get data literacy to more people – so we can truly offer knowledge for everyone.

If there’s anything in the programme that’s piqued your interest, or you just have a question, we’re always happy to chat. Contact us here and we’ll be in touch.

In the meantime, feel free to explore all our online courses.