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Cabinet Office provides £1.5 million for geospatial projects


Mark Say Managing Editor

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The Cabinet Office has shared out £1.5 million to support 10 projects using local geospatial data for public benefits.

It has announced the results of a competition run by the Geospatial Commission and national innovating agency Innovate UK, with the winners including schemes to support safe cycling, finding the way around hospitals and map the UK’s trees.

Minister for Implementation Oliver Dowden said: “We are investing in location based data technology to improve public services and the way people experience them. I’m delighted to see such innovative ideas come forward, which will help people in their everyday lives and keep the UK at the forefront of this exciting new technology.”

The winning projects are led by a combination of public and private sector organisations:

  • Communitree, involving the Open University, Forest Research and Treework Services to develop the largest and highest quality urban tree map in the world.

  • Your.Vu.City, led by Vu.City with Pipers Projects and University College London, aimed at engaging the public with the planning process and improving the understanding of the built environment.

  • Crowd Blacksport Intelligence for 5G Roll Out, in which the University of Warwick is working with Ranplan Wireless Network Design on crowdsourcing service complaints to help guide the 5G roll out for rural and urban areas.

  • Crowdsourcing for a digital geospatial joint strategic needs assessment, with City Science Corporation and the University of Exeter bringing together databases for the public to crowdsource data on issues such as quality.

  • PINPOINT (Precision Indoor Positioning Information System), in which Cartographics is working on the use of Wi-Fi networks and smartphone sensors for better indoor navigation of public buildings.

  • StreetFocus, involving Cyclestreets and Planit helping communities to automatically identify areas that need improvements to street infrastructure.

  • Coreo, a project from Natural Apptitude for the development of a platform on which anyone can build and run geospatial citizen science projects.

  • RIDE (Routing Innovation through Data Engineering, in which Beeline is developing route optimisation for cyclists.

  • Generating crowdsourcing geospatial data, with Transreport undertaking research on accessibility issues for transport and how data can be collected to improve the service.

  • The Neighbourhood Safety Index, in which Synced is aiming to produce the first integrated live score of the safety of different neighbourhoods.

The Geospatial Commission is currently developing the UK’s national strategy in the field. Late last year its chief executive, William Priest, told UKAuthority there will be a parallel review of how to develop the geospatial technology sector, estimated to be worth about $300 billion per annum worldwide.

Image by Kkairri, CC BY 2.0 through flickr

Amended 10/4/19 to change figure on geospatial tech sector value from $300 million to billion

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