The Ministry of Housing, Communities and Local Government (MHCLG) is aiming to develop a new version of the Pipeline tool created by the digital practitioner group LocalGov Digital.
It is setting up a stakeholder group to work with a product manager within the ministry’s Local Digital Collaboration Unit (LDCU) on an alpha phase for the platform’s further development.
MHCLG’s announcement in December on the funding for local digital projects said the Pipeline did not quite fit the criteria for an award, but that it hoped to see it further developed and that the LDCU would work with LocalGov Digital and Hackney Council.
The ministry has now begun a procurement for support in developing the Pipeline, which provides details of ongoing digital projects in participating local authorities. It is part of the effort to encourage collaboration in the field between councils.
The notice says the team is not yet clear what will incentivise wider use of the Pipeline, but it points to its lack of APIs preventing the re-use of data.
It also reiterates the core purpose of helping council digital teams to see where others have done similar work, learn from their experience, and spot opportunities for collaboration.
The Pipeline was initially developed in 2014 by LocalGov Digital taking it to alpha phase. It attracted a burst of interest from local authorities, but the group found it difficult to sustain further development and it has been little used.
Hackney reactivated it last year and there has been further momentum with the Greater London Authority beginning to place product details on the platform.
Image by toffehoff, CC BY 2.0 through flickr