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Geography in Government 2021 award winners

Congratulations to the Public Health England (PHE) GIS Team, Emergency Preparedness Division and the Office for National Statistics (ONS) Data Science Campus who were announced as the joint winners of the 2021 Geography in Government awards in an online ceremony yesterday.

The PHE GIS Team, Emergency Preparedness Division have made a significant contribution to the COVID-19 response, demonstrating the value and importance of flexible and scalable geographical data and tools in supporting the response to a pandemic. They have supported technical advances, developed enhanced visualisation tools, and provided geographical support to inform operational decision making. These have been recognised as instrumental aspects of how we understand and importantly make best use of geographical data.

The work of the ONS Data Science Campus estimated vehicle and pedestrian activity from town and city traffic cameras. Their results provide ‘busyness’ trends covering various UK settlements and has been adopted by ONS as an experimental faster indicator of the impact of the COVID-19 on the UK economy and society.

The Geography in Government awards, which are offered by the Government Geography Profession, celebrate excellence in geography across the public sector and recognise the breadth of work carried out by geographers in government.

The PHE and ONS teams were selected from seven category winners, also announced at the online award ceremony:

  • Advancing geospatial data science – Data Science Campus, Office for National Statistics for their work estimating vehicle and pedestrian activity from town and city traffic cameras.
  • Operational delivery – The Ecosystems Analysis Team and Digital & Data Solutions Team, Joint Nature Conservation Committee, for the Copernicus User Uptake Project.
  • Excellence in geovisualisation and cartography – the Ordnance Survey API Team, OS Maps API and OS Vector Tile API for their new suite of Map APIs that have revolutionised how public and private sector customers use OS data.
  • Impact on policy – The Benchmark Team, Geovation – Propositions and Innovation, Ordnance Survey for the Benchmark Programme and Locus Charter, increasing awareness of risks, ethical principles and sharing good practice with location data.
  • Contribution to the profession – Christine Walton, UK Hydrographic Office for her work in a wide variety of fields within nautical charting both nationally and internationally.
  • Excellence in Local Government – Transport for the North Technical Assurance, Modelling and Economics Team for their innovative Future Travel Scenarios approach to help understand, navigate and respond to transport uncertainties.
  • Excellence in Emergency Response – the PHE GIS Team, Emergency Preparedness Division, for their geographical support for COVID-19 response, informing decision making and policy.

Find out more about those nominated for each category.

Make sure to register with the Government Geography Profession.

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