Smart Cities skype session “Liveable Cities” University of Birmingham

Liveable Cities Skype 7

Dear All,

as part of the “Liveable Cities” research program at the University of Birmingham, we are holding a skype session where I will present some of my PhD research findings on “Smart Cities” for discussion with various stakeholders. There are limited places, yet a few still available for anyone who would like to take part in the discussion. Please email me at or put your details here :

Thank you,

Kind regards

Marianna Cavada

PhD student ‘Smart Cities’

School of Civil Engineering

University of Birmingham

+44 (0) 121 414 3544

+44 (0) 7732 925499

Data Workshop – 15 September 2015@ Impact Hub Birmingham

Presentations from the session are now available below:

Birmingham’s Smart City Commission invited key individuals with a keen interest in all things ‘Data’ and ‘Health’ to their share knowledge and expertise which will be key to enabling Birmingham to become an‘Open by Default’ city.

The work follows on from June’s Smart Commission meeting and the recommendation from Cllr Lisa Trickett for a Data Workshop to shape the development of the Open Data and wider Data agenda of the Birmingham region with a view to producing a briefing paper for wider circulation and adoption.

Smart City Commission Data Workshop
Hierarchy of Data Needs

Hosted by Impact Hub Birmingham and Facilitated by Robin Daniels, Managing Director of Redpill Group, the day included a case study contribution from Atos and Blaenau Gwent County Borough Council/Public Sector partners on their Multi Agency Data Sharing:  Vulnerability Intelligence Project (VIS); and participants were asked to help determine the challenges/pain points, service engagement and data interactions in a ‘Day in the Life’ of an archetype citizen (focusing on the ‘Health of Older People’).

The workshop details can be viewed on Eventbrite.

Please post your comments and perspectives here as we would welcome your input.

Smart Cities / SmartBrum

“Smart Cities” survey

I have experienced love at first sight with Smart Cities. For the past 18 months into the research I have read, searched and analysed most of the published material on Smartness. I feel strong that Smart Cities are and should be about People. I am at the stage of experiencing directly what others think about Smart Cities, through an online survey and interviews.

I am also working on a tool, that will be accessible, transparent and changing according to what people need to make their city Smart or Smart-er. The results of the surveys and interviews will be a good addition for the Smart Cities tool. For this purpose I need people that are also excited about their own initiative, those that are involved in local start-ups at the city of Birmingham to tell me (by completing the survey) what they think and most importantly, what they want Smart Cities to be.

After the survey is completed, I will analyse the results and adjust the Smart Cities tool. This will be my PhD thesis, aimed to share the outcomes for Smart(er) Birmingham. Please see below the ethical approval text from the University Of Birmingham. Also, please find our contact details, in case you would like to find out a bit more!

I am a PhD student, at the University of Birmingham, conducting a study examining Smart Cities in order to develop a resilient assessment framework, working along my supervisors, Professor Chris Rogers and Dr Dexter Hunt. The research is supported by the Engineering and Physical Science Research Council and is part of a larger research program, Liveable Cities (

Survey :

I am interested in your opinions on the matter and you have been selected to take part to this survey because of your (profession, knowledge, interest) to the subject of Smart cities. The questionnaire is a 17 questions survey, divided in themes and takes about five minutes to complete. The results are confidential and anonymous (please do not include your name) and will be published in my PhD thesis (completion date February 2017). Your participation will contribute to a better understanding of the Smart cities context and resilient assessment framework, with Birmingham as a case study.

If you have any questions about the research project or require further information you may contact one of my supervisors or me:

Supervisor: Professor Rogers ( Principal Investigator Telephone +44 (0) 121 414 5066 Email School of Civil Engineering University of Birmingham Edgbaston Birmingham B15 2TT

Supervisor: Dr Dexter Hunt ( Researcher Co-investigator University of Birmingham Telephone +44 (0) 0121 414 3544 School of Civil Engineering University of Birmingham
Edgbaston Birmingham B15 2TT

Student Researcher: Marianna Cavada ( PhD student University of Birmingham Telephone +44 (0) 7732 925499 School of Civil Engineering University of Birmingham Edgbaston Birmingham B15 2TT

If you agree to participate, click on the following link . I would very much appreciate your prompt response

Kind regards

Marianna Cavada PhD student “Smart Cities” School of Civil Engineering University of Birmingham +44 (0) 121 414 3544 +44 (0) 7732 925499

Ofcom reveals UK is now a ‘smartphone’ society!

Smartphones have overtaken laptops as the most popular device for getting online, Ofcom research has revealed, with record ownership and use transforming the way we communicate.

Two thirds of people now own a smartphone, using it for nearly two hours every day to browse the internet, access social media, bank and shop online.

Ofcom’s 2015 Communications Market Report finds that a third (33%) of internet users see their smartphone as the most important device for going online, compared to 30% who are still sticking with their laptop. More…

Spica Technologies’ Devicepoint™ is shortlisted for the Cisco BIG Awards

Innovation Birmingham Campus-based start-up Spica Technologies has been selected as a semi-finalist in Cisco’s BIG Awards 2015. The final of the ‘Internet of Things’ focused awards event will be held in London on 22nd October, where the winner will receive a top prize of cash and support worth $220,000. The runners up prizes are worth $110,000.

Spica Technologies’ nomination is for its ‘Devicepoint™ for healthy water’. The start-up is developing the system on Innovation Birmingham’s Low Carbon Accelerator programme, which is part of the European-funded Climate-KIC initiative. Devicepoint™ is a risk management tool to control Legionella, powered by a secured wireless network and low-energy sensors.

Real-time data is transmitted to the Devicepoint™ cloud and the networked solution issues alerts if there are any immediate risks to be addressed. The low-power system also produces detailed reports, identifying any areas of stagnant pipework that need attention.

Paul Collins, CEO of Spica Technologies said: “Devicepoint™ revolutionises how Legionella is monitored and controlled, which is a basic requirement of every commercial premise and public building. Rather than conducting a manual on-site test, our system continually monitors the risks, producing real-time data and alerts when action is required. By constantly monitoring the temperature of sections of pipe work, it provides a vastly superior picture of any likely risks and eliminates the potential for human error from the process.

“It is great news for us that the 2015 Cisco BIG Awards are focused on Internet of Things start-ups. Being selected as a semi-finalist is a huge endorsement of the work we’ve done to date to launch this new solution to the marketplace.”

20 start-ups have been selected as BIG Awards semi-finalists by Cisco. The shortlist includes projects that turn information into actions and present businesses, individuals and countries with new capabilities, richer experiences and increased economic opportunities. The finalists for the Cisco BIG Awards will be announced on 28th September 2015.

Tom Kneen, Head of the British Innovation Gateway (BIG) programme said: “We see pilot projects such as ‘Devicepoint™ for healthy water’ as a new Internet of Things networked solution, which could have tremendous commercial value and disrupt a traditional market.

“By eliminating regular manual testing work, the risk of a water system being contaminated with Legionella is significantly reduced for a fraction of the current typical cost. The benefits of Internet of Things powered systems such as this are numerous in many domestic and work environments, as we move towards a future of Smart Cities.”

For more information about Devicepoint™ click here or email

Scout7 Kick-Off 2015/6 Football Season With Video Content Analysis App

Ahead of the new 2015/16 football season, Scout7 has launched a new video scouting and analysis app within its industry-leading Intelligent Sports Framework (ISF) application, which is being used at 150 professional clubs worldwide.

During the last six months, the Innovation Birmingham Campus-based football technology company, whose clients include Chelsea, Manchester City, Barcelona, Paris SG, Juventus and Borussia Dortmund, has invested heavily in its video content infrastructure. With data centres covering the globe, Scout7 captures over 3,000 professional broadcast matches each month, totalling over three million minutes of new footage a year. It is the industry leader for analysis solutions in the major European football leagues.

Bradford Griffiths, Operations Director for Scout7 said: “During the last 10 years, scouting and analysis departments have expanded considerably at the elite end of professional football.

“These departments operate 24/7 and are under constant pressure to deliver detailed analysis to their club’s senior management. It is our job to support these departments by providing an environment that allows them to manage, review and collaborate on content as a team.”

Sxout7 has worked in close collaboration with Intel to completely upgrade its video processing environment. This has included the adoption of Intel’s Quick Sync Video hardware, allowing football matches to be transcoded in just 15 minutes, four times faster than was previously possible. It also enables the company to deliver video for streaming and download with one parse of the original file, meaning crisp HD content is not compromised through transcoding.

Scout7 also works with the sports data company OptaPro, who provide time-coded match event feeds for every football game played in over 60 leagues and competitions during the season, which are integrated into the match video. The improvements mean that Scout7 can now deliver HD content, with the integrated events, to each client within two hours of the final whistle.

The introduction of the new ISF video analysis app,, ensures that club staff can utilise Scout7’s enhanced video content to optimise their existing scouting processes, using either a desktop or tablet device.

Bradford Griffiths added: “The features we have introduced in our app mean that scouts and analysts can now start their evaluation of matches played on a Saturday afternoon early on in the same evening. So no matter whether they need video to prepare for their team’s next game, or require footage of players being monitored for potential recruitment, they can prepare detailed analysis for senior management faster than ever before.

“What’s more, if content is time-critical, they can share it with colleagues via email who can stream it on-the-go.

“As a company, we are committed to providing our clients with the best professional services available and with we are confident that top flight clubs will be able to further optimise their various scouting and analysis processes into the new season and beyond.”

Key features of the app include an event filter, which allows users to watch key events such as shots, passes and tackles involving a specific player or team in sequence from multiple games, including events for and against. These event clips can be saved as playlists and archived online, or shared via email. also incorporates editing tools that enable users to conduct their own editing of games online, without the need of offline editing software. The app also incorporates match and event playback buttons, which allow users to speed up or slow down the footage as they watch it, in addition to being able to jump to a specific time in the game. As well as the analysis mode, the app also allows games to be watched in a pop-out player, so that games can be watched on various devices in full-screen.


Wildlife Conservation Park reaps wireless benefits!

Staff at the Birmingham Wildlife Conservation Park are being helped to carry out their daily tasks by Wi-Fi installed as a part of a city-wide scheme, the Wireless in Public Buildings Project, led by Digital Birmingham. See this short video from the launch

For connected buildings near you, please visit

Google’s Digital Garage opens in Library of Birmingham

Google Garage

Google’s new Digital Garage in the Library of Birmingham to be growth engine for local business

  • Google’s pop-up ‘garage’ opens in Birmingham, one of five UK city centres
  • New research shows over half (51%) of small businesses say young people are not learning enough digital skills and nearly a third (29%) feel the cost of training is putting them off getting the basic digital skills they need
  • 200,000 businesses to get a digital ‘tune-up’ and free digital masterclasses from Google and partners
  • Google will nurture future digital talent by organising coding training sessions for 25,000 teachers

Google has today launched The Digital Garage at Library of Birmingham in Centenary Square. The Digital Garage is a multi-million pound initiative that will help 200,000 British businesses learn crucial skills for the digital age, and use the power of the internet to reach more customers and increase productivity.

The Digital Garage  Continue reading Google’s Digital Garage opens in Library of Birmingham

Users Workshop – Opportunity to shape tomorrow’s products

Living Labs Application (LILA EU Interreg NWE-IVB) in collaboration with Birmingham City University (BCU) invite you to interactively engage and inform evolving local and European entrepreneurs operating in the digital industry.  An opportunity to hear first-hand the essence of a tech start-up and the successes that can be achieved when technology is applied to enhance all aspects of the modern life.

The event is scheduled on Thursday 30th July at BCU and will feature four LILA entrepreneurs; KonnectR, City Hour, Web Ignite and Sport 50. Feel free to attend one or more sessions. Refreshment and lunch will be provided.

For full programme and registration visit

For more information contact or feel free to connect with us on twitter @CEBEenterprise.

We are looking forward to seeing you at this event!

LILA InterregBCULOGO Secondary landscape

A place to share ideas and developments for a Smarter Birmingham


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