More Joy Diversion

Saturday 21st July, 13.00 – 17.00
Federation House
Federation Street
Manchester M4 4BF

Book here

Our last trip out was lovely. The sun was out and Manchester and Salford revealed a few of their many mysteries – so we are doing it again.

Calling all ramblers, explorers and meanderers. Surveyors, cartographers and inquisitors – people who look up to the rooftops and down into the culverts. Join us for an afternoon of mapping, exploring and wandering in Central Manchester and Salford.

Often viewed as a functional place of work, retail and leisure, our city centre bounded by Trinity Way, Great Ancoats Street and the Mancunian Way is imbued with history, iniquity, celebration and endeavour. Let us go out and find what’s out there, discover the forgotten spaces, create stories and map our city.

More details here

Techniques for learning and teaching data skills #1 Data Expeditions

13th July 2018 – 10.00 – 16.00
Federation House
Federation Street
Manchester M4 4BP

In association with 360Giving

A data expedition is the best way to learn data skills by working through datasets. We’re looking for people with a deep interest in a particular topic or who have particular skills in coding, analysis, scouting out data, design or data-storytelling who will work with a team to guide them through a data-based investigation. We will focus on 360Giving grants data, but feel free to explore other topics too!

This data expedition will be in ‘train the trainer’ format, and will teach you how to facilitate your own data expeditions in the future, and will explain how to incorporate data expedition in your work.

Please bring a laptop if you can although spares will be available.

Refreshments and lunch will be provided.

This is a limited capacity event. If you are unable to attend please notify us so we can make your place available to others.

You can register here

Follow the money – public spending and procurement in Greater Manchester

Follow the money – public spending and procurement in Greater Manchester

Tuesday, Jun 26, 2018, 6:00 PM

The Federation
Federation Street, Federation House M4 2AH , GB

22 Members Attending

The value of public sector procurement within the UK exceeded £301 billion in 2016 and in the City of Manchester £445.6 million was spent with its top 300 suppliers in 2016/17 alone. Greater Manchester is home to over 2.8 million people and with devolution, more control over how money is being spent rests locally. Come and discover where this money…

Check out this Meetup →

Joy Diversion

Saturday 19th May 12.00 – 17.00
Federation House
Manchester M4 4BF and then wherever

Register here

Calling all ramblers, explorers and meanderers. Surveyors, cartographers and inquisitors – people who look up to the rooftops and down into the culverts. Join us for an afternoon of mapping, exploring and wandering in Central Manchester and Salford.

Often viewed as a functional place of work, retail and leisure, our city centre bounded by Trinity Way, Great Ancoats Street and the Mancunian Way is imbued with history, iniquity, celebration and endeavour. Let us go out and find what’s out there, discover the forgotten spaces, create stories and map our city.

As well as exploring, we will also introduce you to mapping with OpenStreetMap; the people-powered map of the world.

We will propose expeditions to uncharted territories, revisits to previously explored places, strange meanderings and any other diversions that people fancy.

Adventurers will be split into parties and encouraged to map, photograph, document and bring back their findings to share with everyone.

If people want to delve deeper there should be an opportunity to do further research on the places discovered.

You will need:

Yourself
Comfortable walking shoes or what ever you need to get around
Weather appropriate clothing (hopefully sun cream rather than waterproofs!)
A phone: with a camera would be advantageous

The event is open to all, although minors need to be accompanied.

In addition to this event, the day will also include a short annual general meeting of the OSM UK community interest company. For more information on the AGM and to register click here

If you would like to help out on the day, let us know by email hello[a]opendatamanchester[.]org[.]uk or contact us on Twitter @opendatamcr

Safiya Umoja Noble – Algorithms of Oppression

Tuesday 8th May 18.00 – 20.00
Federation House
Manchester
M4 4BF

Register here

In her recent best-selling book Algorithms of Oppression, Safiya Umoja Noble challenges the idea that search engines like Google offer an equal playing field for all forms of ideas, identities, and activities. Data discrimination is a real social problem. Noble argues that the combination of private interests in promoting certain sites, along with the monopoly status of a relatively small number of Internet search engines, leads to a biased set of search algorithms that privilege whiteness and discriminate against people of colour, specifically women of colour- and contributes to our understanding of how racism is created, maintained, and disseminated in the 21st century.

Safiya Umoja Noble

Dr. Safiya U. Noble is an assistant professor at the University of Southern California (USC) Annenberg School of Communication. She is the recipient of a Hellman Fellowship and the UCLA Early Career Award.

Noble’s academic research focuses on the design of digital media platforms on the internet and their impact on society. Her work is both sociological and interdisciplinary, marking the ways that digital media impacts and intersects with issues of race, gender, culture, and technology design. Her monograph on racist and sexist algorithmic bias in commercial search engines is entitled Algorithms of Oppression: How Search Engines Reinforce Racism (NYU Press). She currently serves as an associate editor for the Journal of Critical Library and Information Studies, and is the co-editor of two books: The Intersectional Internet: Race, Sex, Culture and Class Online, and Emotions, Technology & Design and several articles and book chapters. Safiya holds a Ph.D. and M.S. in Library and Information Science from the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign, and a B.A. in Sociology from California State University, Fresno with an emphasis on African American/Ethnic Studies. She is a partner in Stratelligence, a firm that specializes in research on information and data science challenges, and is a co-founder of the Information Ethics & Equity Institute, which provides training for organizations committed to transforming their information management practices toward more just, and equitable outcomes.

Supported by MMU and The Federation in partnership with The Omidyar Network and Co-op Foundation

Deprivation vs Political Representation dataset

Over the last couple of weeks we have been putting together data on local political representation and deprivation at a Local Super Output Area level. This data is put together using LSOA 2011 to Ward to Local Authority District 2016 with the English Indices of Deprivation 2015 Lookup in England from the Office of National Statistics and Ministry of Housing, Communities and Local Government respectively, and local councillor affiliation data manually entered from the 326 council tax and business rates raising local authorities of England.

The open data can be found here and we will update it after the local elections in May – please read the README before using.

You can read more about how the dataset was constructed here

Data for Good #1 Understanding where we live

Tuesday 24th April 18.30 – 20.30
Federation
Federation Street, Manchester M4 4BF

Register on Meetup here

There is a huge amount of data that is collected by the UK Government and others that describes the communities in which we live. This data informs policy decisions at a national and local level. Datasets such as the Indices of Multiple Deprivation have been described as the ‘billion pound dataset’ because of its importance.

Outside of the world of data analysts and academia these datasets are relatively unknown, yet they can be incredibly useful to anyone who is interested in their communities, wants to develop evidence for funding applications or is thinking of developing a business in a certain area.

Data for Good #1 follows on from our So you think you know your country? events and gives deeper insight into some of the data available. The seminar will introduce the world of statistical geography and some of the datasets and tools you can use.

As the event is going to be more hands on, access to a laptop would be advantageous, but not essential.

IF YOU LIKE YOUR STATISTICAL GEOGRAPHY AND WANT TO HELP OUT – GET IN TOUCH – THE MORE PEOPLE WHO CAN HELP THE MORE PEOPLE WE CAN HELP

Deprivation vs political control

View full image here

The Indices of Deprivation is a hugely useful collection of datasets in England. Commissioned by the Ministry for Housing, Communities and Local Government, and developed by OCSI, the indices allow us to understand relative deprivation of neighbourhoods across the country. The indices are used by many different organisation to support decision-making, from determination of funding for schools, to charitable grant-giving. Some even call it the billion pound dataset.

In the context of these indices, deprivation is a measure representing a range of factors, from quality housing, to air quality, educational attainment to crime. The indices tend to be published every 4 years or so, the last in England was 2015. Similar indices are also published for Wales, Scotland, and Northern Ireland.

England is split into 32,844 geographical units, each of which has a population of around 1,500 people. These are called lower super output areas (LSOAs). Each of these LSOAs is scored according to a range of factors, and then each LSOA is ranked according to all the others (ie 1 is the most deprived, 32,844 is the least deprived).

At Open Data Manchester, we believe that it is important that everyone is aware that this dataset exists, and that they have the opportunity to understand it and use it. Because of this, we are embarking on a series of events which will look at the indices of deprivation in detail, to help people understand what the data says about the area that they live in, and how they might be able to use that data to challenge local decision-making, to support their own business development, help with applications for grant-funding, etc.

While there will be events, workshops and training to come, we wanted to make something that visualised the dataset, to help kickstart the conversations. So we came up with this poster, that we’re calling a lava lamp plot.

To interpret the charts, local authorities are arranged according to the rank of average ranks of LSOAs in that area. For this measure, Manchester is the most deprived local authority, and Hart in Hampshire is the least deprived.The shape of each chart is derived from the number of LSOAs in each area that fall into each vigintile (quantiles of 5% – a more granular version of a decile). This distribution curve is smoothed, mirrored, and filled in according to the political party in control of the local authority council. The shape of the curve shows the distribution of LSOAs by deprivation – the fatter the bottom, the more deprived LSOAs there are; the fatter the head, the fewer deprived areas there are.

We’ll do a couple more posts over the coming weeks that look at the technical details for how we made the poster. We got the deprivation data from OpenDataCommunities, and the political control data from the Local Government Information Unit. The tools that we used to manipulate the data were R, RStudio, ggplot, and Adobe Illustrator. Code is available at this GitHub repo.

We are producing an edition of A2 Fine Art prints printed on heavyweight paper suitable for framing for £30 inc VAT. If you would like one of these please get in touch at julian[a]opendatamanchester[.]org[.]uk with the subject line Fine Art Prints. The A2 image can also be downloaded here

Manchester Youth Hack # 8 The Open Data Manchester Challenge

Manchester Youth Hack is a two day coding competition where young people get to try coding in a friendly environment with professional mentors. The next event is 24-25 March.
If you are interested in getting involved more information can be found here

The challenge

On three floors of Federation House there are sensors measuring temperature, humidity and movement producing a dense dataset of many thousands of data points. The data allows the performance of the building to be monitored to save energy and money, but what else is it showing? Something has happened and no-one is quite sure what it is.

We will be making available two weeks of sensor data from the sensor network that has been created as part of our Knowable Building Framework. What will the data reveal?.