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Land rovers, grants, poetry and data

October 2022


Send a poem where it can make a difference

National Poetry Day logo, backed with images of creatures such as whales, hares and butterflies

It's National Poetry Day today and we were delighted to see that the associated website suggests sending a poem to your representatives via our WriteToThem service.

"Find or write a poem that speaks about something you’d like to change or praise about the environment", says the campaign; then: "send your poem to decision makers, activists or local people who can make a difference." 

So: got a choice couplet, a heartfelt haiku or a light-hearted limerick for your reps? Here's where to start.


 Fragmented public data

If you publish data about or from public authorities, or use it in your work, we're sure you'll have opinions about the differing data standards between bodies!

And once you've finished that big sigh, we'd love to hear from you — more details here.

A magnifying glass held up to a face, showing the wearer's sunglasses bigger than the rest of them. Image by Marten Newhall

Use your Googling skills for good

Our Freedom of Information site WhatDoTheyKnow strives to keep email addresses for more than 45,000 public authorities up to date — which, as you can imagine, is no easy task.

This is just one of the many day-to-day operations involved in providing a smooth experience for our users. The good news is, it's one you can help with, as and when you have time.

If you've got 5 minutes and fancy a quick Google, take a look at this post and see what you can find. Thanks!

The past lives of military land rovers

A camo-coloured land rover

If you're the owner of a land rover that you think might have had an exciting past life in the military, FOI provides one route to find out more. John goes into details here, with examples of some successful requests.


Innovations in Climate Tech

Innovations in climate tech: global inspiration for local climate action

19 October

Prepare to bid

In last week's event, we saw how tech is helping local councils reach their carbon zero targets in a variety of settings. If you'd like to catch up, check out our summary post here.

We hope the speakers got your imaginations racing, because in our next online meet-up we'll be discussing how innovators and organisations can team up with councils to bid for one of our grants. These will give £5,000 towards the trial of a new project.

Sound good? You can still take part even if you didn't attend the initial event: just make sure you've taken in the video and notes, and then register for the next meeting here.

Climate data and climate coding

A broad tree with a wide root ecosystem

Researchers and developers: we're on a mission to know more about how our services can help you in your climate work.

Two posts to get you started:

Mapping climate progress

A figure walking through an autumnal woods with the sun low in the sky

ReForest Brighton is a climate initiative, developed in the seaside town but spreading its ambitions across the UK. They're currently using the data from our Climate Action Plan Explorer to ensure everybody understands more about councils' progress to their carbon neutral targets: read more about their mapping project here.

Be sure not to miss our climate news

We're doing so much work around climate that it now deserves its own newsletter! 
TICTeC Labs logo

Civic tech in hostile environments:

How can we thrive in challenging contexts?

Rescheduled: 17 October

Civic tech practitioners around the world are operating in the face of all kinds of hostile environments. Some face governmental resistance to their services; others are trying to keep websites up and running within a conflict zone. In Civic Tech Surgery #6, we'll discuss some of these challenges and how we might put solutions in place that will benefit organisations globally.

Everyone is welcome to join in this discussion: reserve your place here for free.

What we're reading

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Through our trading subsidiary SocietyWorks (05798215) we also provide commercial services.
Image credits: Rubik's Cubes - Olav Ahrens Røtne; Magnifying glass Marten Newhall; Land Rover AlfvanBeem via Wikimedia Commons; Tree Emma Gossett; Forest Aaron Burden.
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