Data is currently not being treated as infrastructure. We need to change this.
Data such as statistics, maps and real-time sensor readings help us to make decisions, build services and gain insight. Data infrastructure will only become more vital as our populations grow and our economies and societies become ever more reliant on getting value from data.
Data infrastructure consists of data assets such as datasets, identifiers and registers, the standards and technologies used to curate and provide access to those data assets, the guidance and policies that inform the use and management of data assets, the organisations that govern the data infrastructure and the communities involved in contributing to or maintaining it, and those who are impacted by decisions that are made using it. Trustworthy data infrastructure is sustainably funded and is directed to maximise data use and value, meeting society’s needs.
Data is as important as our road, railway and energy networks and should be treated as such.
We risk seeing data only as a tool for transparency, when it should also be an engine of efficiency and growth. We need to strengthen our data infrastructure.