As London looks to strengthen its global reputation as an open and influential city for business, harnessing new talent will be crucial in keeping the capital’s economy thriving.
A new collaboration between Transport for London (TfL) and Bosch will allow small businesses and start-ups to work with renowned experts and use cutting-edge data to develop innovative transport solutions.
An 18-month pilot programme will match leading technical experts from TfL and Bosch with a range of small businesses to help understand how data and technology can be used to solve key transport issues.
These include more efficient, greener and safer vehicles, reducing congestion and encouraging more people to walk, cycle and take public transport across London.
The Mayor of London, Sadiq Khan, said: “This initiative will foster closer working between London’s tech sector and other leading tech cities. If we are to use data and smart technology to help solve the biggest problems our city faces, it’s crucial we take a more collaborative approach. I see London’s future as a global ‘test-bed city’ for civic innovation, where the best ideas are developed, amplified and scaled.”
Throughout the collaboration, TfL will provide technical knowledge and a wide range of datasets to allow companies to test ideas and understand patterns in more detail than has previously been possible.
In return, Bosch will dedicate urban mobility professionals to provide technical expertise, guidance and mentoring. Bosch will also provide dedicated space for TfL and selected start-ups within their new ‘Connectory’ facility in Shoreditch. This new ‘urban mobility’ lab is the first of its kind with a primary focus on urban mobility and will provide the forum for private sector partners, academia and public sector to work together to tackle a range of problems facing Londoners.
Arun Srinivasan, Executive Vice President and Head of Mobility Solutions, Bosch UK, said: “We believe that the collaboration between Bosch and TfL will enable us to accelerate the development of technologies, products and services that have a positive impact on city life. We are very excited that Bosch’s ‘Connectory’ in London will get a focus on urban mobility, helping to solve the challenges at work in this great city, alongside a range of influential partners.”
The Connectory will also be used by a range of other companies, allowing greater opportunity for collaboration and knowledge-sharing which was not previously possible for small businesses working alone. Subject to the success of the pilot programme, similar approaches may be taken to other aspects of the Greater London Authority’s work including housing, environment and policing, with a focus on delivering objectives within the Mayor’s London Plan.
Eddie Curzon, CBI London Director, said: “London’s journey to become the world’s smartest city must be facilitated through knowledge transfer, innovation and cross-sectoral collaboration. Future-proofing the city’s transport network is fundamental to this, with partnerships such as these highlighting businesses’ ability to help develop solutions to increasingly complex challenges.”