Freedom of Information
A brief introduction
The Freedom of Information (FOI) Act 2000 is designed to help increase confidence in Public authorities through a greater transparency and openness about procedures and decision making. A great deal of information is already routinely available from the University, FOI expands this to include all information held by the University. FOI places two main responsibilities on the University:
1. To produce a Publication Scheme
Under the Act the University is obliged to produce a Publication Scheme identifying all the information that the University already publishes. The scheme includes information such as the University Committee structure, term dates, procedures etc. The Publication Scheme will be regularly updated; any ideas for additional content should be sent to email@example.com
2. To respond to requests for information
FOI gives everyone both from within and outside of the University a right of access to recorded information held by the University. Individuals have the right to be told whether or not the information is held by the University and if it is to have the information communicated to them. This includes minutes from meetings, planning information, reports etc. Anyone can request access to this information, the request must be made in a recorded form (e-mail, letter) and can be given/addressed to any member of staff at the University. The requester does not need to explain why they want the information, it is enough to ask for the information and provide a name and contact details to which to provide the information.
The University has 20 working days in which to deal with the request.
It is important to note that FOI does not mean that all information must be provided in response to a request, there are reasons including Data Protection, Confidentiality and Commercial Interests that may exempt the information for being provided. A full list of exemptions can be found in the more detailed information.
For more information about the Freedom of Information Act read our summary of the FoI Act or follow the links on the left.