2020 FOSS4G UK – Locus Charter & Benchmark Initiative


The Locus Charter is an international set of principles and guidance for ethical and good practice in using location data.

In 2019 the Omidyar Network funded 2 programmes of work looking at ethical implications of using location data – Benchmark Initiative in the UK and EthicalGEO in the USA. Since then the world has seen an unprecedented situation arise with the spread of COVID-19 across most countries in the world. Location data has been at the fore of understand, predicting and trying to manage the outbreak. A key topic that has arisen during this has been the question “what constitutes ethical use of location data?” This is being openly debated particularly in the use of contact tracing apps that are being developed by many governments across the world. The Locus Charter is a collaboration between the teams at Benchmark and EthicalGEO to develop an agreed set of international principles to help guide practitioners towards the ethical and responsible use of location data in their projects. www.benchmarkinitiative.com www.ethicalgeo.org

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