Wikipedia co-founder to advise UK Government

News 13 Mar, 2012

Jimmy Wales will give his insight into how technology can shape future policy.

a href="http://www.itpro.co.uk/630061/top-10-facts-about-wikipedia" target="_blank"]Wikipedia[/a] co-founder Jimmy Wales is set to take up an advisory role for the UK Government.

Wales’ agreement to take on the unpaid position was revealed at this week’s South by South West (SXSW) conference in Texas, with senior advisor to David Cameron, Rohan Silva, tweeting the appointment.

The Cabinet Office confirmed the move to IT Pro.

Wales will work with the Cabinet Office to give recommendations on how technology can aid the policy making process within Government - something the current administration is working towards making a more open process.

The main thrust of the role is to take part in the Government’s crowdsourcing initiative, encouraging more members of both the civil service and the public to give their views on Government policy.

Known as ‘Jimbo’ online, the new advisor co-founded the internet encyclopedia website with Larry Sanger back in 2001. He is a member of the Berkman Centre for Internet and Society at Harvard Law School and on the advisory board of the MIT Centre for Collective Intelligence.

IT Pro contacted Wales for comment but he had not responded to our request at the time of publication.

A government spokesman told the Telegraph: “Mr Wales will act as an unpaid adviser to Government to support its agenda to open up policy-making to the public.

“He will advise Government on developing innovative new ways technology can be used to give the public a greater say in the policy-making process.”