Essex seeking to create Big Data hub

Essex County Council is investigating the creation of a data sharing platform aimed at improving health, education, social and economic outcomes.

The authority has launched a prior information notice seeking to engage with suppliers on the concept, with a view to issuing a full tender in January next year.

It says it could initially pursue a prototype covering 4,000 vulnerable households before extending the platform wider.

The prior information notice said: “Essex County Council is looking at opportunities to create the ability for several partners to use a data sharing platform and predictive risk modelling tool that will produce a range of analytical reports and will also link with geospatial systems to provide a geographical view.

“The project will provide meaningful data that enables partners to plan together with communities to enable resilience prevent demand and ultimately improve health, education, social and economic well-being.”

The 12-month prototype would focus on families and households with prospective mothers and children under five years old “where the evidence for early intervention is most robust”.

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Essex says that the platform must support the anonymization and psuedonymisation of data, the creation of unique identifiers at the source location,  the ability for data sharing and matching, predictive risk modelling.

The council wants the solution to provide reporting through dashboards and reports aligned to geospatial software.

“The project has a number of significant information governance challenges, for example unique; identification; privacy notices and consent,” the council said.

“Therefore it is important to note that the data must be anonymised / pseudonymised at source and we are looking at all options around this function. The systems which provide pseudonymisation must be able to create a unique identifier for all partner data.”

One of the questions the council wants to ask suppliers is whether their systems can perform predictive modelling against certain behaviours.

Responses to the prior information must be submitted by the end of this month.

Colin Marrs

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