I work with multiple organisations on topics around technology, digital, data and artificial intelligence and tend to do a mix of technically-savvy policy and policy-savvy technology delivery. Some people call me a technologist, others a policy wonk, others a “Peter-of-some-trades”.

I like to work in teams, think about systems, ask questions, have opinions, and get useful stuff done. I like to work with multiple organisations simultaneously. I am motivated by reducing the harm caused by technology and trying to make it benefit everyone. I care a lot more about people than I do about technology.

If you want to work with me then there are several ways to get in touch. Try peterkwells@gmail.com, peterkwells@protonmail.com, mastodon, twitter or even linkedin.

If you just want to chat about interesting things then I”m experimenting with keeping an hour a week open for other people to book using calendly. Click the link, follow the instructions, and create a video conferencing thing for us to use.

Background

I spent 20 years working with telecoms businesses and regulators in most European countries before accidentally moving into policy. In 2014 I worked in a voluntary role to organise an independent review of digital government for the UK Labour Party. From 2015-2019 I worked in the policy team at the Open Data Institute (ODI).

Having worked with businesses, governments and civil society in both policy and delivery roles I have a grasp of how technology gets built and maintained, an understanding of the complex ways that technology and society interact, a knack of making that complexity accessible, and the ability to navigate that complexity to try to create change.

Some work

In progress

Working with The Legal Education Foundation on data governance for people-centred justice systems.

Working with ProjectsbyIF on various things including:

  • exploring future public services that might be enabled by digital identity, data sharing, and personalisation.
  • how to design digital services that use AI systems so that they are more controllable by service users.
  • how to make future TV interfaces work for vulnerable consumers.
  • imagining a future in which charities create more value from data.

A campaign to open up the UK address file, and related geospatial things.

Committee member of the Royal Statistical Society’s Data Ethics & Governance section.

Advisory member of the Digital Catapult’s MI Garage Ethics Committee.

Completed

Working with ProjectsbyIF to reimagine accountability in digital services.

Working with ProjectsbyIF on a discovery project for a service that supports people to participate in genomics healthcare and research.

Working with ProjectsbyIF on their Responsible Technology by Design framework.

Working with ProjectsbyIF to explore design challenges in how the EU Digital Markets Act changes consumer choice.

Working with Oxford Insights to develop recommendations for how a government can run a data sharing pilot, and how to select between data trusts, data commons and data marketplaces as an approach.

Working with ProjectsbyIF to increase trust in software through design thinking including:

  • research, prototyping, product strategy recommendations and new web presences to increase adoption of sigstore, SLSA and Security Scorecards.
  • these are open source projects hosted within the Open Source Security Foundation and are designed to improve software supply chain security.
  • sigstore – which helps sign, verify and protect software – is particularly cool and rapidly being integrated into multinational businesses, programming ecosystems, and developer tools like github.

Supporting the Centre for Public Data on geospatial data.

Working with ProjectsbyIF to research and make recommendations on the user experience of PETs, privacy-enhancing technologies.

Research on the UK agriculture ecosystem and sustainable food supply for Agrimetrics and Oxford Insights.

Co-chair of the UK Open Government Network working group developing commitments on algorithmic transparency and data ethics for the next National Action Plan. Sadly, the UK Government backslid on its commitments.

Recommendations on approaches to algorithmic accountability for a philanthropic funder.

The Hidden Middle for FutureDotNow: the case for businesses to invest in the essential digital skills of their workforce.

Reboot Britain for the Alliance for Full Employment: research and policy recommendations for closing the UK’s digital divide.

Exit through the App Store for the Ada Lovelace Institute: a rapid evidence review on using technology to transition from the first COVID-19 lockdown.

A book chapter on the UK’s initial approach to digital contact tracing.

Older work for the Open Data Institute:

Making Digital Work for Everyone: an independent review of digital government for the UK Labour Party.