School of GeoSciences

Freedom of Information

The Freedom of Information (Scotland) Act was passed by the Scottish Parliament on 24 April 2002. All provisions of the Act will be in force from 1 January 2005. The Act entitles anyone from anywhere in the world to request access to any information held by Scottish public authorities (which includes the University of Edinburgh). The request does not need to mention the Freedom of Information Act. Public authorities will be required to provide the requested information within 20 working days, or to issue a statement outlining the reasons why the request cannot be met.

There are exemptions for some material but most of the exemption categories are very narrow and many are subject to the public interest test. For more information on exemptions, please see the Records Management pages link at the foot of this page.

The Five FoI Key Points

1. You have a maximum of 20 working days to answer any request for information.

2. You cannot ask why the individual wants to know the information.

3. If the information is not within your area of work or you have concerns about responding, contact your local FoI Practitioner (Susie Crocker).

4. You must make sure you are not the sole keeper of information within your area of work.

5. All your work documents and emails may be open to public scrutiny.

For more details on FoI, please see the Records Management website .