Background & context

Development of the Open Banking Standard convened 150 people from 80 organizations over three months to develop the baseline principles and scope of the Standard. This included incumbent and challenger banks, startups, trade associations, regulators, consumer rights and UK Treasury. The Standard was then regulated in the UK and implemented by all the banks within two years. It transformed the sector from Closed, to Shared and Open mandating not just interoperability around data, but sorting out the rule (liability, rights, security, redress, etc) and is changing behaviours across the financial market.

The impact was (and is) a cultural one, not a technological one, addressing the legal, IP, liability and related issues to create an “open, federated, networked solution”, echoing the design of the Web itself. Released as an open standard, the Open Banking Standard is being copied around the world (Australia, Europe, Hong Kong, India, Japan, Mexico, Malaysia, New Zealand, Rwanda, Singapore and the USA) as an exemplar of best practice for public-private market intervention in the digital age. Both Irene Graham and Gavin Starks were (and are) instrumental in its design and execution.

Cofounded by Sir Tim Berners-Lee and Sir Nigel Shadbolt in 2012, the Open Data Institute was a global first, with a dedicated mission to unlock the value from Open data. Its founding CEO, Gavin Starks, led it to create over $150M of direct, quantifiable impact within four years of launch, including incubating 40+ companies, engaging over 1,000 members, training 10k experts, reaching over 3M people with international media stories, launching 30 franchises across 20+ countries (including USA, Canada, Germany, Russia, UAE, Australia, Brazil) and helping develop policy in over 30 countries (from Burkina Faso to Malaysia). Gavin also led the positioning of Data as Infrastructure, which is now included in the UK’s National Infrastructure Plan.

Icebreaker One builds on both these initiatives, to unlock value in Shared Data.