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Digital Policy Alliance

The Digital Policy Alliance (DPA) is the politically neutral, cross-party policy voice of the internet and technology sector.  The DPA informs government policy for a competitive, inclusive, networked society.


Who we are

Dr Jon Hall leads the DPA at the Open University, determining the 21st Century Digital Skills agenda for the UK. Dr Hall works with parliamentarians, industry and academic representatives as industrial chair of the 21st Digital Skills Workgroup. Contact Dr Hall for more details or to get involved.


What we do

The Digital Policy Alliance (DPA) alerts Parliamentarians and policy makers to the potential impacts, implications, and unintended consequences of policies which interact with and leverage online and digital technologies. We collaboratively cut across organisational and cross-sector boundaries to produce informed, representative and authoritative publications based on practical experience and insight, and suggest and review proposals for government policy, legislation and regulation as it applies to the UK.

At the Open University, the DPA@OU is focussed on digital skills. Dr Jan Collie, for instance, is working on policy interventions for skills for digital engagement; Dr Irum Rauf is working on building software for human; and we are just about to launch an exciting natural ecosystem analytics stream of work too.

At the OU, as you might expect, we’re taking care of an Open digital future.


What we are

We are an independent policy forum and not-for-profit, cross-party, broad-based membership organisation, which for the purpose of financial transparency is a company limited by guarantee. We are a politically neutral, cross-party policy voice for the internet and technology sector, informing policy- and decision-makers and working for a competitive, inclusive, networked society.


How we operate

We focus on digitally-related topics – such as digital skills, national infrastructure, cyber security and e-crime, data protection, age verification and internet safety, artificial intelligence and the development of a Smart Society.  We form active technical working groups which produce focused summary briefings for Parliamentarians, Ministers, civil servants and industry members. We distribute our findings to policy decision-makers and influencers through a programme of targeted events and publication of briefings, reports and papers.


What we are not

We are not a lobbying group. There is no party political prioritisation to our work. We do not get involved in campaigning. We do not advocate positions on behalf of individual members or interest groups. We do not promote specific technologies.


Some DPA achievements over the years

  • We set the agenda for the original European Telecommunication liberalisation programme.
  • We helped establish the priorities for Transformational Government, including the need to address the issues of secure data sharing.
  • We alerted Government to the need for more effective co-ordination and collaboration with industry in the fight against e-crime and helped set the agenda for a number of Government anti e-crime initiatives.
  • We led the DigiChampz project which was an EU Commission-funded project that showcased the European Union's flagship Digital Agenda policies.
  • In April 2018 we successfully launched the Publicly Available Specification (PAS 1296) for age checking.
  • We argued effectively for the inclusion in the Digital Economy Act 2017 of the power for the Regulator to block non-compliant websites world-wide in order to protect children.
  • We hosted an international meeting of the Internet Engineering Task Force in the House of Lords in March 2018.
  • We were invited to hold a Smart Society Working Group meeting on 'The Barriers to making a City Smart' at the first meeting of the Intelligent Communities Forum Global Summit to be held outside of the USA in June 2018.
  • We were invited to make a Submission to the House of Lords COVID-19 Committee Inquiry in December 2020


DPA Policy Areas

Details of our Policy Areas are avilable here.


DPA Publications

Please visit the central DPA website for publicly available Parliamentary Briefings and Position Papers, Consultation Responses and Submissions & Opinion Pieces along with access to the EURIM historical archive.


Past Meeting and Events

Summaries of some past meetings and events can be found on the central DPA website.


DPA Lead