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A look back at the public sector's year in IT

Government cuts, IT Agenda Setters and cloud computing projects
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Written by Nick Heath, Contributing Writer on

Government cuts, IT Agenda Setters and cloud computing projects

As we prepare to say goodbye to 2010, silicon.com takes a look back at the biggest public sector stories of the year.

As an election year, there was a lot of focus on what a change in government would mean for the UK's biggest public sector IT projects, starting in January with silicon.com's examination of Which of Labour's big IT projects will survive the Tory axe.

When the May election arrived, all parties tried to tap into the power of the web to get their message out to voters, and silicon.com investigated which parties had campaigned online most effectively in Tweeting Brown and web Cameron: How to win votes Obama-style.

Once the election dust had settled and the coalition government was in place, silicon.com spelled out what the new administration had planned for government IT in Liberal-Conservative coalition: What UK's new government means for tech.

The new government was quick to scrap or cut back some of the larger IT projects begun under Labour, from the ID cards project, which was doomed from the start according to ID cards: Why they were destined to fail, and the NHS National Programme for IT, which underwent some serious reductions NHS IT revamp: Coalition wields £700m scalpel.

The coalition is not a fan of expensive long-term IT projects in general, as Cabinet Office minister Francis Maude made clear in negotiations with government's 19 biggest suppliers, in Slash your profit on tech projects, public sector vendors told, and subsequent revelations of the scale of IT cuts, in Spending review: £1bn-plus cuts to government IT bill.

However, not all IT projects started under Labour were immediately canned by the coalition. A notable survivor was the G-Cloud project to create a government-wide cloud computing infrastructure, details of which can be found in silicon.com's Cheat Sheet: G-Cloud. Meanwhile other large IT contracts that have survived the coalition seem to be tailored towards saving the government money, as the taxman's IT director made clear in Outsourcing: Taxman lifts lid on deal that's saving HMRC £1bn.

After giving the coalition some time to bed in, silicon.com gathered the opinions of experienced public sector staff and suppliers to put together Government IT Agenda Setters, the definitive list of those figures with the greatest influence on public sector technology.

And finally not all public sector news carried with it such import, as silicon.com got stuck into the latest developments with the BBC iPlayer, in BBC iPhone apps for iPlayer, sport and news revealed.

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