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U.K. Government Embraces Openness

WSJ - There’s a risk that being based in the U.K., that Tech Europe takes too Anglo-centric view of the world, but London is one of—and perhaps the—main tech hubs in Europe ,and the U.K. government has hit a series of right notes when it comes to tech. It has just sounded another.

After a faltering start (its ICT strategy paper was somewhat patchy), the Conservative-led coalition has taken a number of well-placed steps. From its use of fiscal incentives to reward angel and seed investing, through some key appointments (Facebook’s head of EMEA Joanna Shields to run Tech City), key organizations (the Government Digital Service under Mike Bracken) and key principles (the Open Data Institute under Sir Tim Berners-Lee and Professor Nigel Shadbolt), there is a very strong and very positive thread uniting them all.

The latest step is the publication of its report on open standards. And once again, the government has got it right. It is a refreshing, well-crafted, thorough document, that admits the mistakes of the past,  points the way to the future and  lays down seven principles that few could argue against.

It is not often you read a government document and repeatedly mutter to yourself “yes!”