Nottingham Insight is a shared evidence base, providing access to data, information and intelligence about Nottingham and the surrounding areas. The site has been designed to help Nottingham meet its 20-year strategic vision for the city. This vision was developed by One Nottingham in full consultation with a wide range of residents, businesses, community, voluntary and faith groups and public agencies across Nottingham.
Laura Denny, Intelligence Co-ordinator, Nottingham Insight Network, says that getting the website to where it is today has been an iterative process. Nottingham Insight started out as a bespoke GIS application in 2005 which had been built in-house. However, it was taking time to maintain and the way the system was built was constraining future developments. The team had already used InstantAtlas desktop and felt that InstantAtlas server could help them meet their development needs.
Building the templates took some time and effort but Laura says it was worth it. The Nottingham Insight team were trying to push the boundaries and ended up using beta versions of the software to make sure they got what they wanted.
Data collection also proved a big task but establishing links with partner organisations has proved worthwhile. “One of the members of the team maintains the system but it’s no longer a technical role. This means our developer is freed up to make enhancements as and when they are needed,” says Laura.
Meeting the need
Nottingham Insight’s profile library contains data on range of themes – for example: Crime, Population, Housing and the Economy. The data library allows for direct access into the underlying raw data which drives the profiles. The website also carries a database of documentation; these are publicly accessible strategic documents provided by Nottingham City Council.
A good example of Nottingham Insight in action is the way it was used by Nottingham University Hospitals’ Strategy Team. The Strategy Team is responsible for preparing the NHS Trust’s business plans which inform the way it will deliver its services.