Freedom of information: what's in it for researchers?

Added by Sarah on 14 September 2009 09:51

Monday, 14 September 2009 09:30 - 16:00

Location: The Lighthouse, Glasgow

This event raised awareness of the Freedom of Information (Scotland) Act as a tool for researchers and to aid understanding of the new access regime.

Held in Glasgow, this day covered how to use the Act to access records and information and what makes successful requests - but also possible limitations of the legislation. Case studies were presented to describe how researchers have used FoI in practice, and there were presentations also to provide insights into the FoI regime from a distinct Scottish perspective.

A note from the meeting will be posted soon. In the meantime, the presentations made at the event are available below. Key speakers included:

  • Professor Duncan Tanner - Director, Welsh Institute for Social and Cultural Affairs, Bangor University
  • Sarah Hutchison - Head of Policy and Information, Scottish Information Commissioner
  • Bruno Longmore - Head of Government Records, National Archives of Scotland
  • Hugh Hagan - Senior Inspecting Officer Government Records Branch, National Archives of Scotland

The workshop was aimed at academic researchers and other types of researchers, such as journalists; librarians, archivists and other information professionals who provide research services and research training; compliance officers interested in facilitating access and advising requesters and public policy makers in the access to information arena.

This is the second event on this topic for the RIN. The first was held in September last year in London -visit our event page to read about this and listen to a short podcast of the highlights.

Finally, it is worth looking at an article in a recent edition of Information World Review, on how the Act is being used, and what might make it work even better.

A brief report from the event is attached below. Some pictures from the day are available on Flickr, courtesy of Graham Steel, who has also written a useful blog about the meeting.

Further information, with background documentation, on the RIN’s involvement in FoI issues can be found here.

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