Sector - Education & Training

Minister announces new digital partnership in Wales

The Minister for the Cabinet Office visited South Wales to announce a new partnership for the next digital talent.

Matthew Hancock, Minister for the Cabinet Office, visited Wales yesterday to announce a new partnership between the Office for National Statistics (ONS) and Newport educational charity Alacrity.

The new partnership will bring the digital expertise of Alacrity to the ONS, one of Newport’s biggest employers, as it develops and modernises the UK’s key economic statistics.

Alacrity is the UK’s only charity tech incubator, with the mission to mentor the brightest graduates in Wales to create a new generation of British digital workers. On the visit, the Minister saw for himself the Welsh Digital revolution taking place.

He met students who were participating in their Graduate Entrepreneurship programme as well as companies who have completed it. He also visited the Office for National Statistics headquarters in Newport.

Matthew Hancock, Minister for the Cabinet Office and Paymaster General, said: “Digital technology has the potential to revitalise government and business, supporting the economy and the UK.

“The potential to revolutionise and build organisations through high quality digital skills should not be underestimated, and businesses such as Alacrity are changing the digital landscape of Wales through training and developing skills.”

Professor Simon Gibson, Chair of the Alacrity Foundation’s trustees, said: “We are proud of our unique status as a charitable tech incubator, providing access to seasoned world class mentors and creating the next generation of British tech companies in Wales. For this reason it seems entirely appropriate we should forge a relationship with a world class body like the ONS.”

John Pullinger, National Statistician from the Office of National Statistics, said: “As the home of the UK’s economic statistics, it is vitally important that ONS Newport fully embraces the current revolution in data technology.

“It offers the ability to produce important economic indicators like employment, prices and GDP faster and more reliably than ever before. To do so we need to develop new skills and new ways of doing things. We will be looking to work closely with impressive local initiatives such as the Alacrity Foundation and the National Software Academy to help make it happen.”

The minister also met with a range of digital innovators and entrepreneurs in Cardiff which, alongside Newport, is the fastest growing tech cluster in the UK.