Research by the UK’s Open Contracting Partnership, and OpenOpps, an open data start-up analysing government contracting, shows that of about 450 public contracts of the 208 public bodies spending money with Carillion, less than 50 public contract notices could be verified by searching all of the UK’s public databases. This they call a worrying shortfall since the UK is meant to have a central registry of contracts, Contracts Finder, but its use is voluntary. There are many different systems that award contracts, track spending and manage performance, it says, but none of them talk to each other. The system is opaque and fragmented. “Data and due diligence are paramount when so much public money is spent. We should be able to analyse past performance and to monitor overspend daily – holding both the buyers and suppliers to account.” And it gives four ways to achieve that, which could be applicable universally, read them here on The Independent.  

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