GOVERNANCE AND ALIGNMENT OF TAXONOMIES ACROSS THE UK GOVERNMENT
The Taxonomy Oversight Group and its role in UK Government taxonomies
By Suzanne Fry
The UK Taxonomy Oversight Group (TOG) launched in September 2021 with a remit to provide a cross-government endorsement mechanism for taxonomies adopted by UK Government. TOG is a joint initiative between the UK Office for National Statistics (ONS) and the Central Digital and Data Office (CDDO). Prior to TOG, governance mechanisms were haphazard or non-existent, posing considerable risk to the effectiveness of our taxonomies and usability of data based on them. This was a barrier in the effective use of data across government. TOG aims to bring data experts, subject experts and taxonomy users together to discuss and agree best practice; provide a collaborative approach to agreeing taxonomies that are fit for purpose; and develop, populate and maintain a Taxonomy Catalogue for users to promote consistency in adoption. In this session, we outlined why TOG launched and why having a governance process for taxonomies is so important. We highlighted the achievements of TOG during our first year, which included gaining support for the model and recruiting wide membership; designing and implementing the TOG governance model; developing a Taxonomy Catalogue; and publishing a Taxonomy Best Practice Framework setting out the key principles of what makes a good taxonomy. There have also been many challenges in the implementation of the TOG model, which we highlighted in this presentation. We also explained our recommendations for building on and developing the model to address these challenges going forward.
Careers information: a single source
By Dan Blakemore
In January 2021 the Department for Education published Skills for Jobs. In this document we set out what we wanted to achieve when providing careers guidance and educational choices for young people and adults in England. However, to support this we knew that we needed a single source for government-backed, comprehensive careers information, because what we had was fragmented. We already have the National Careers Service website and decided to build on this to make it the place for government-assured careers information. To do this we set up a project called Single Source.In this case study we will present details of how the work undertaken by the Taxonomies Oversight Group (TOG) helped the design of the Single Source. In this presentation we outlined the aim of the Single Source and showed how it would become the foundational information underpinning high quality careers guidance for all users at all stages of their career, wherever they access their careers guidance. Finally, we detailed the longer-term aim of the DfE’s Unit for Future Skills to deliver a UK skills taxonomy bringing together qualifications, skills and occupations.
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