Digital Catapult partnership with Newton Circus makes cities testbeds for data projects
London and Singapore are to open up billions of data points for experimentation as part of an initiative agreed by the Digital Catapult, the centre backed by InnovateUK to help businesses find new value in data sharing, and technology company Newton Circus.
They are setting up a programme named Data City, Data Nation to provide a “data sandbox” that will be open to businesses, and public service organisations, from the end of January 2016.
It will make it possible for them to build and test new services using the data, with an early emphasis on healthcare, transport, energy and safety.
Among the sources it will draw on is the London Datastore 2, which provides access to data on a range of issues including health, crime, employment and carbon emissions. This attracts about 30,000 visitors per month and has already been used for the creation of more than 200 apps.
The initiative has the support of government ministries and agencies in the UK and Singapore, including the Greater London Authority, the Department for Business, Innovation and Skills, and the Foreign and Commonwealth Office. The Digital Catapult said it should encourage collaboration between organisations in the UK and Singapore, especially those working on the internet of things.
Andrew Carr (pictured), chief operating officer of the Digital Catapult, said: “For the UK to remain a leader in the digital economy, we must focus on two areas, improving consumer trust in data-sharing and increasing collaboration between organisations to share the data they own. With the latter we can achieve the former, showing consumers the real-life benefits of data intelligence and the innovation it can bring to their lives.
“The partnership with Singapore will drive this change, increasing momentum in two of the leading lights in data innovation, London and Singapore.”
The Digital Catapult has issued a call for participation, and said the launch will be followed by a series of challenges to provide solutions to specific problems.