Weeknote — 2020-05-07

Local plans

What are we thinking about?

This week we finished our second sprint where we explored what a national picture of plan making could look like, and started our final sprint where we are focussing on how and when local planning authorities should submit their data. A data standard, and ways to present that data, is only useful if local planning authorities can and will regularly submit accurate data.

We finished our second show and tell by posing the following questions to guide us through this final sprint:

  • How should local authorities provide data, and how can it be kept updated?
  • How to build trust in the data provided?
  • Should we be concerned with monitoring delivery?
  • Local plans… or all DPDs?
  • Do the NPPF categories really work for policies?

With only 6 days of delivery left in this alpha, we need to stay focussed and to manage scope carefully. There are areas where we know there is value in further exploration, but we’ve de-prioritised them for this phase so we can ensure we are testing our riskiest assumptions and testing a slice of the whole ‘service’ - from local authorities submitting data, to presenting it for policymakers and planning inspectors. Examples of these questions that we’re parking for now are should there be a data standard for the evidence base? _and _what do local planning authorities need to be able to provide standardised geographic shape data for policies?

What have we done in the last week?

  • The prototype national picture was tested with people from MHCLG policy
  • We held our second show and tell
  • We analysed the findings from user research so far, and re-wrote some user needs for the work
  • We wrote how might we statements to aid the development of ideas for design for the prototype in Sprint 3, and prioritised those ideas for design

What are we planning to do next?

  • The prototype will be developed to reflect our Sprint 3 goals, including exploring the geographical representation of policies within plans
  • We’ll draft some guidance for providing the data required in each part of the emerging standard
  • We’ll be testing the prototype and guidance with local planning authorities

Who is on the team?

  • Debs Durojaiye (designer, dxw)
  • Samantha Opara (user researcher, dxw)
  • Alex Yedigaroff (transformation manager, dxw)
  • Richard Crawley (planning expert, PAS)
  • Stephen Barker (planning expert, PAS)
  • Paul Downey (service owner, MHCLG Digital Land)
  • Sarah Hunt (project lead, MHCLG planning)
  • Andrew Langley (MHCLG planning)
  • Natalie Record (MHCLG Digital Land)