Last week Parliament hosted a search conference for representatives from the Norwegian, Swedish and Dutch Parliaments. This was the third time this annual event has taken place. The focus of these conferences has moved from discussing technical solutions to focusing on user needs by looking at interface design.

Some of the highlights included a demonstration of the new committee pages on the Norwegian Parliamentary website; the Dutch roll out of PARLIS an internal information management system; and an interesting discussion about the future of video footage on parliamentary websites. The presentations provided an excellent opportunity for all the Parliaments to learn from each others’ experiences.

Recent work on Parliament’s site search has been well received with more improvements in the pipeline. We are currently keen to develop ideas about faceted search, an approach which has been taken by a number of other organisations e.g. the Guardian. Talking to other organisations as well as our users will help us get search right.