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Edited and published by

DECEMBER 2018

POV

NEWS AND VIEWS FROM PARKSIDE OFFICE VILLAGE

BUSINESS & EDUCATION

FULLY CHARGED

WHAT IS AGRITECH?

New opportunites to collaborate at Parkside.

Identifying demand for electric vehicle charging.

Is it a bird? Is it a drone? Tech transforms farming.

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Contents. 12 Entrepreneurs and education James Cracknell, Interim Manager of the Start-Up Hub is keen to hear from Parkside tenants about how the Essex Business School can engage with the businesses here.

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Make some noise

Essex in Parliament

Sustainable soft drinks

How Frazer Merrick, Director of Teaboy Games get on at the first Abbey Road Red Hackathon last month?

Find out how the Essex Chambers of Commerce engage with the county’s MPs and champion the interests of businesses in Essex.

BUNA Coffee explain how their latest partnership with the Univesity of Essex is reducing the organisation’s environmental impact.

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Entrepreneurs and education

What is Agritech?

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Identifying demand for EV charging points Stonehaven Technology’s director, Jonathan Crook, considers the infrastructure required to power electric vehicles.

Gateway for growth How can the Business and Local Government Data Research Centre help you?

Interim Manager of the StartUp Hub, James Cracknell shares his passion for education in the field of entrepreneurship.

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Making an impact with data

Top of their class

Is your data working for you?

How can the Business and Local Government Data Research Centre help you?

TT Education receive a prestigious national award for their work with schools.

TALE report the launch of their new funding scheme to support logistics with data.

Precision farming has the potential to supercharge production. Marieke Sjerps of Creative Quills explores the rise of tech in modern agriculture.


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Welcome.

I

recently attended a Creative Colchester strategy event, where passionate individuals from across the town came together to discuss Colchester’s digital, cultural and creative future. Comprising of stakeholders that included the Mercury Theatre, University of Essex, Colchester Borough Council and an array of local businesses, the goal was the plot a

strategic direction to see these key sectors flourish. Unsurprisingly, the Knowledge Gateway was held aloft as integral to this ambition, not only thanks to our thriving business community but also thanks to our reputation as a hub for innovation. I attended as an enthused contributor, aiming to encourage greater collaboration and connectivity between the Knowledge Gateway and businesses in the town, an aspiration shared by many in the room. The strategy will be released in 2019 and I am looking forward to seeing how the vision of so many invested individuals combines, and how vital the Knowledge Gateway proves to be.

Spring 2019 will also see the longawaited opening of the Innovation Centre. This striking building will become home to innovative businesses and individuals, bringing added energy and creativity to an already active community. Managed by experienced growth facilitators, Oxford Innovation, the centre will become a hub for entrepreneurial endeavour. We look forward to hearing stories and insight from 50 vibrant new start-ups in future editions. It is our pleasure to welcome James Cracknell to Parkside. James is the interim manager of the Start-Up Hub and Incubation Centre. His commitment to entrepreneurial education will undoubtedly bring the community closer to the university during his time here. So, with the festive period very nearly upon us, we would like to take this opportunity to wish you all a very merry Christmas and a prosperous 2019.

Do you have news or an event you’d like to share? A story or insight that could be of interest to the community? Send an email to info@creativequills.co.uk to secure your space in the next edition.

TOM BROOME CREATIVE DIRECTOR, CREATIVE QUILLS


Make some noise. BY FRAZER MERRICK DIRECTOR, TEABOY GAMES

During the 10-11th November, the worldfamous Abbey Road Studios hosted its first ever Hackathon, bringing together a community of engineers, artists, producers and academics with partners including Microsoft, Miquido and University Music Group. The event invited creative technology pioneers to explore some of the questions facing the future of the music industry, and we had just 24hrs to create our very own ‘hack’ in response.

After 24hrs in Studio 1, including about an hour’s sleep on the 87 year old floor, we presented our creation “Sonic Breadcrumbs”, a choose-your-own-adventure rooted in the physical world. Our hack used CHIRP emitters and a mobile web client which listened for the CHIRPs to move through a decision tree narrative. Think of it as a cross between geocaching and an “escape the room” experience, but all done via audio cues (facilitated with a text to speech integration).

As we filed into the famous Studio 1, having dodged the taxi-driver-infuriating queue of tourists lined up by zebra crossing outside, it’s hard not to feel intimated by the sheer scale of the space and the artists who have graced the space beforehand.

We envisage this technology being perfect for immersive theatre experiences, tourist trails or treasure hunt games - with the CHIRP emitters embedded into props or costumes, delivering instructions or narrative to your device based on your location - all without needing an internet connection, just a device with a speaker and a microphone. Needless to say we intend to keep developing the idea further as the possible implementations are exciting.

Aside from being the Creative Director at Teaboy Games, I’m also an Education Coordinator at Signals, a creative digital learning charity in Colchester. It’s here I teach a variety of digital creative subjects including video game making, physical computing and music technology. This love of playful technology was shared amongst the team I found myself with, and we set about creating a physical experience (rather than a software one) and were keen to explore what “game design” ideas we could apply to CHIRP, a wireless communication technology for exchanging data between nearby devices via sound.

The whole event was incredibly inspiring, with the other hackathon attendees creating projects such as an AI-powered rap-battle opponent that listens to your freestyles then responds with a punchline, a mobile app for people to jam together on their own phones, a VR/AR synthesizer where you make music by kicking objects in the virtual space, and even an additive synthesiser effect created by the audience pressing vegetables on their screens!

“[Sonic Breadcrumbs] is a lovely use of audio to detect spatial locality, which could be just at home in a museum or gallery as an enhanced location-aware audio tour.” DANIEL JONES - CTO, CHIRP


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PHOTO CAPTIONS:

TOP: The stage set for the final presentations. MIDDLE: Frazer Merrick presents Sonic Breadcrumbs. BOTTOM: Attendees put their creativity to the test over 24 hours.

Photo © Frazer Merrick 2018

Interested in the crossover between music and technology? Here are some upcoming events to get involved in:

Photo © Jake Davis 2018 - hungryvisuals.co.uk

Noise=Noise @ Manor Ballroom, Ipswich. Saturday 1st December, 18:00 00:00, £5 Experimental music/noise night featuring diy punk electronics, music from gameboys and lots of noise. Hackcoustic Christmas Party, IKLECTIK London. Saturday 15th December, 19:30 - 22:30, £10 Featuring Graham Dunning and Sam Underwood demoing their Mammoth Beat Machine (a cross between a drum sequencer and a fairground organ), Ales Alessia Milo’s Aural Fabric interactive textile map of Greenwich and Andrew Hockey premiering his brand new and interactive Water Bowl Piano. CLIP @ Firstsite, Colchester. Every Monday, 5 - 8pm, FREE A weekly meet-up for anyone interested in music and sound where you can play with synths, microphones and musical tech. No experience or equipment required, just a love of music and sound. Open to all ages 14 and up.

Photo © Jake Davis 2018- hungryvisuals.co.uk


LOCAL DEVELOPMENT BY DAVID BURCH, DIRECTOR OF POLICY

Essex in Parliament. To find out more about what we do for businesses in Essex, visit our website at essexchambers. co.uk

A key area of the Chambers’ work is engaging with the county’s Members of Parliament and lobbying hard for the interests of all businesses in Essex. Recently we took over 70 businesses from across Essex to the House of Commons for Essex Chambers’ third Parliamentary Reception. The aim of the event was to showcase the great work done by businesses large and small in the county and remind our politicians of some of the issues that affect Essex residents and businesses alike. Hosted by the Rt Hon Priti Patel MP the event featured speeches from Chamber Patrons – c2c Trenitalia, Greater Anglia, DP World London Gateway – as well as from the Chairman of the South East Local Enterprise Partnership, Highways England and the Chief Constable of Essex. All spoke of the great partnership they enjoyed with the Chambers and the benefits it brought both them and the businesses they engage with. Speaking after the event Denise Rossiter, Chief Executive of Essex Chambers of Commerce, said “It was a real pleasure to host our third reception in the House of Commons, especially as it took place on Budget Day

which was even more auspicious by being the last before Brexit. There was a real sense of positivity and can do amongst everyone there, which to me sums up the entrepreneurial spirit of Essex and I was delighted that so many Chamber members were able to join us” The Rt Hon Priti Patel MP added “I was delighted to host the outstanding Essex Chambers of Commerce and the many fantastic businesses from across Essex in Parliament to celebrate their achievements and hear more about their inspiring plans for future growth and expansion in Essex.” “Essex is the county of entrepreneurs and I applaud the Essex Chambers of Commerce for the voice they bring to the business agenda for Essex. They provide much valued support for businesses and ensure their voice is heard across government on the critical issues of jobs, the economy and economic growth across Essex. “I am an enormous advocate of the Essex Chambers who have achieved strong policy outcomes working with Essex MPs and I will continue to facilitate engagement with Ministers so the business needs of the county are communicated to the highest levels of government.”


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BUNA

Sustainable soft drinks. The University of Essex is striving to improve its environmental impact and increase its positive social influence. Together with BUNA Coffee, they are providing more ecological and ethical solutions for the University’s catering needs. BUNA Coffee sees the partnership with the University of Essex as an important step towards making a bigger ecological and social impact. At the start of this academic year, BUNA Coffee began supplying soft drinks for what is now the first plastic bottle-free venue on campus – BYTES Café on Square One. Lines of products were selected based on the following key criteria: • • • •

Drinks packaged only in glass or aluminium cans Brands with a stronger ethical, social and ecological impact Decreasing carbon footprint in distribution and delivery process – working with local producers whenever possible Active support of recycling and upcycling of used packaging materials and glass bottles

The partnership with the University of Essex is of vital importance to BUNA Coffee as its founders and directors are closely connected to the University community – all of them have studied, worked or taught there at some point in their life. Dominik Burcin, BUNA Coffee’s co-founder said: ‘As a one-year-old startup, to become a supplier of such a large institution is a great point of pride for us at BUNA Coffee. We will continue in our endeavours to support the University of Essex in its great efforts to make its catering operations more ecologically-friendly.’

coffee


Identifying demand for EV charging points.

BY JONATHAN CROOK DIRECTOR, STONEHAVEN TECHNOLOGY

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he forecast growth of Ultra-Low Emission Vehicles (ULEVs) brings an accompanying need for the charging infrastructure. A number of studies identify two different categories of electric vehicle (EV) charging infrastructure; Long Distance Charging and Localised Charging. Taking 2030 as scenario planning data, the number of electrical vehicle charging points needed has been estimated at 100,000 chargers. A 2017 comparison of electric and non-electric vehicles reported in Colchester illustrates the scale of the transition required.


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The Localised Charging Network is defined by charging events, such as charging of vehicles whilst parking at a specific location such as retail centres, on street charging and the use of charging points comparable to today’s petrol stations. The high volume of today’s petrol stations, with many provided by supermarkets, such as Tesco, Sainsbury’s and Asda, creates a natural anticipation for the provision of electric vehicle charging. At the end of November 2018, Tesco released a press statement on an initiative to team up with Volkswagon to bring 2,500 charging points at 600 Tesco stores by 2020. The ‘slow’ charge will be free, whilst the ‘fast’ charge will be at cost. It is anticipated that Sainsbury’s and Asda will follow with subsequent announcements, with the distribution of charging points influenced by both modelled consumer demand and post entity merger plans. From a practical perspective, a significant amount of infrastructure work could be required at individual locations. Charging points need to be accessible to multiple vehicles at once, so centrally positioned, rather than at the edge or a corner of a car park. Enhancement work may also be required of the local electricity grid, adding cost and complications.

91,145 licensed vehicles in Colchester

185 electric vehicles in Colchester

Establishing the current numbers of licensed vehicles and electric plug in vehicles at a Local Authority area is revealing. Colchester as a Local Authority is currently going through population growth and some accompanying infrastructure development. More recently, the Department for Transport issued an update for Quarter 2 of 2018 to report a growth of a further 33 electric vehicles in Colchester, taking the grand total to 228 vehicles. In the United Kingdom, in mid-2017, the Office of National Statistics reported that the Non-Metropolitan District of Colchester had a population of 190,098. Assuming an increase in the population to 200,000 for Quarter 2, 2018, this equates to 1 electric vehicle for every 877 of the population. Interestingly, there are no universally accepted goals or standards for charging infrastructure density, either on a per-capita or per-vehicle basis.

IMAGE CAPTION:

Images taken from Zap Map shows the contrast in the number of charging points between Colchester (top) and Bristol (bottom).

Potential EV owners will need to be confident the level of infastructure is sufficient to enable them to charge their vehicles as needed. Significant investment will be required to stimulate change from diesel and petrol cars to cleaner electric vehicles. As well as the opporutnity to become a world-leader in electric vehicles, early investment in the right infrastructure is vital to creating healthier towns and cities, and a more sustainable future.


Gateway for growth. BY JAMIE BURNS HEAD OF OPERATIONS, UNIVERSITY OF ESSEX KNOWLEDGE GATEWAY

Parkside is the place to be An industry leading technology firm and well-respected housing association are amongst the businesses making their home at the latest phase of Parkside. Global Technology Services (GTS) is the technology arm of leading global business process outsourcing company MSX International (MSXI). The move to Parkside is MSXI’s latest investment in GTS, reflecting its competence in creating and delivering industry-leading technologies and services that enable the digital transformation of the automotive industry. The move will reunite GTS with MSXI’s Innovations Team which was recently set up to develop solutions based on data science, predictive analytics and machine learning techniques, and is already well established at Parkside. Brendan Walsh, Global Vice President and Chief Digital Officer, GTS, MSXI, said, “This relocation is a strategic move by MSXI to take advantage of the unique opportunities that come with close ties to the University and its talent pool, as well as its proximity to other technology-focused companies. We also have access to vital facilities such as the ESRC Business and Local Government Data Research Centre and the Institute for Analytics and Data Science.” The University’s Registrar Bryn Morris said: “MSXI is an incredibly ambitious company which is using data science and machine learning to transform various sectors. We’ve already benefited hugely from having their innovations team at the Knowledge Gateway. Having Global Technology Services joining us offers more opportunities to collaborate on research and for the company to link in with our graduate and student talent.” The move aligns with MSXI’s involvement in a Knowledge Transfer Partnership with the University of Essex, supported by the UK’s innovation agency Innovate UK. This project, links MSXI with academic expertise at Essex and talented graduates to bring in new skills and the latest academic thinking. GTS has already recruited University of Essex graduates under the scheme.

PHOTO CAPTION:

Colne Housing staff visit their new head office at Parkside, with Jamie Burns and project manager, Matt Brown.

The move also coincides with several major changes within the organisation, including further investment in technology development and the expansion of its analytics service offering. “It’s an exciting opportunity for MSXI, not just because the organization will benefit from high-spec research facilities, but also because we’ll be part of a thriving centre for innovation across the science and technology sectors,” said Walsh. Colne Housing which provides 3,200 affordable homes in Essex and Suffolk is moving its head office to Parkside from mid-December. Parkside offers Colne Housing a modern new setting for its 50 staff as it positions itself at the forefront of Colchester’s innovative business community. Sara Thakkar, Chief Executive of Colne Housing, said: “We are really pleased to be part of a dynamic new setting as we embark on the next chapter of our modernisation journey. The building is equipped for our teams to provide a high standard of customer services and allows us to fulfil our plans to deliver an effective new Contact Centre and digital service options.” Mr Morris said: “We are delighted to welcome such an important local organisation to our rapidly developing Knowledge Gateway community. “Colne prides itself on doing its best for local people in need of affordable housing. We are keen to see how we can work together and share expertise to help Colne offer innovative solutions to respond to the regional housing shortfall.’’


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“Oxford Innovation know exactly what it takes to build thriving startup communities, drive growth and transform local economies.”

PHOTO CAPTION:

University of Essex Registrar, Bryn Morris (left) and Commercial Director at Oxford Innovation, Gareth Scargill, (right), outside the Innovation Centre, due to open in spring 2019.

Oxford Innovation to take lead at new £12m centre The UK’s largest innovation centre operator Oxford Innovation is to deliver flexible workspace and support for up to 50 technology businesses in the soon to open £12m Innovation Centre next door to Parkside on the Knowledge Gateway. The purpose-built Innovation Centre will offer extensive dedicated and coworking space, tailored for early stage and start-up businesses. The partnership between Oxford Innovation and the University will see businesses start to move in from spring 2019. Oxford Innovation is the market leader in managing flexible workspaces and supporting innovative early stage science and technology SMEs. Hitting the ground running they are now launching a drive to identify businesses who want to join its start-up community from March 2019. Jo Stevens, Managing Director, Oxford Innovation, said: “This new, purpose-built centre will be the core of a dynamic and innovative cluster drawing on and driven by collaboration between business and the University, stakeholder support, and wide-ranging networks at local, national and international level.”

“Focusing on supporting early stage businesses and start-ups from the region and spin-outs from the University, we will provide a range of office space solutions, impressive meeting and conference facilities and access to specialist on-site business support.” Alongside the space managed by Oxford Innovation, the Innovation Centre will include a café, areas for students to develop business ideas and space to showcase Essex research, linked to the creative and digital sectors. The Innovation Centre is being backed by £2m from Essex County Council and £2m from the South East Local Enterprise Partnership’s Local Growth Fund. Mr Morris said: “Oxford Innovation are the market leader and know exactly what it takes to build thriving start-up communities, drive growth and transform local economies. “This partnership with Oxford Innovation marks a new phase for the Knowledge Gateway. Our Parkside Office Village is thriving and now we have this dynamic eco system developing for emerging businesses.” Visit www.essex.ac.uk/business/knowledge-gateway to learn more about our growing research and development park.


Entrepreneurs and education. Interim manager of the Start-Up Hub, James Cracknell, explains why he and Essex Business School’s (EBS) new MBA Director, Nicolas Forsans, are so passionate about education in the field of entrepreneurship.

As business owners we all slip into ‘jobmode’, that is the daily activity that inevitably involves putting out fires rather than igniting them. Sometimes, we cannot find the time to explore what being an entrepreneur is all about; the exploitation of the new, the constant need to find a better way and seek a better life, to be a leader. We become contained in our thinking, closed rather than being open. Education is about forging the right mindset and the means to become a whole lot better at what we do. As entrepreneurs we learn in three ways: 1. 2. 3.

Through traditional education programmes delivered through colleges and universities Through our networks and the reciprocity of peer mentoring By doing - that is screwing up and reflecting on what failed us.

All ways are valid yet sometimes we get the mix wrong relying on the third far too much and ignoring the first completely. We can all cite the stories of ‘the boy-donegood’ heroic entrepreneurs forging a pathway to glory from the school yard to success. They exist, they are real but also they carry with them a truth, that the best of these are consummate self-led learners and proud of it. There are entrepreneurs that use their networks to learn from, who engage with mentors (knowingly or not) and some, but not that many, who pursue the traditional route via formal means.

In my role as a business mentor and entrepreneurial educator I attend many entrepreneurial events across the country and can attest that there are a diversity of players out there. The mix of characteristics is amazing, that there is no similarity of personality, just a whole lot of difference. That is not to say that some similarities don’t exist. In the most successful of them, they are hungry to learn, committed to step out of their comfort-zone every day, push their boundary a little wider and be at their most creative when they need to. Entrepreneurial education is simply the way to deliver this in the most effective way with the result that we become more self-aware, build confidence and have the skills to see and exploit the new. What We Can Do By connecting academia to the entrepreneurial community, and not the other way round, we bring the start-up culture to the doorstep of the entrepreneurs. That is why the Start-Up Hub resides here, currently at Parkside (C2) and then in the new Innovation Centre for next year. It is our vision that business engage with universities, in pursuit of education and in the sharing of knowledge and insight. As Brad Feld, the prominent VC from Boulder Colorado says “universities are the source of fresh blood, new thinking and potential leaders” of the entrepreneurial community. It is up to the entrepreneurs to lead this engagement.


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Entrepreneurship is increasingly recognised as a career choice for graduates, yet many businesses believe the quality of graduates, in terms of business savvy, is low. Through entrepreneurial education, ours as entrepreneurs and that of the students, we can bridge this gap. We can help develop the future talent we need, talent that will keep the pipeline fresh and flowing with a diversity of perspectives and new thinking. As Interim Manager of the Hub I am only here until March 2019, but if we can deliver a framework of activities that suit Parkside businesses and the work Nicolas does then we will be establishing the collaborative approach that will underpin the next phase of development for growth and ultimately the creation of quality jobs that this region needs. Both Nicolas and I are open to suggestions as to how the EBS can effectively engage with Parkside. Equally, how can our MBA students engage with business for our mutual benefit? Please contact Nicolas (n.forsans@essex. ac.uk) or myself (jc18103@essex.ac.uk) with ideas and thoughts. I am always happy to meet you and help you navigate any issues or concerns you may have surrounding business collaboration.

James Cracknell is the Interim Manager of the Start-Up Hub and Incubation Centre. He is a co-founder of Relocon, an entrepreneurial education business establishing a community of practice for entrepreneurs in this region. He is a member of the IOEE and is SFEDI registered, has a BA in Leadership and Management and holds a Certificate in Systems Thinking. He is a Trustee for ACT, a local health and wellbeing social funder and charity.


BY MARIEKE SJERPS SENIOR CONTENT WRITER, CREATIVE QUILLS

What is Agritech? Imagine a farm where a flock of drones flies overhead, gathering data. This information is processed to direct robots to deploy precision amounts of fertiliser onto only the crops which need it. As the field is monitored, recommendations are sent back on ways to improve the status of the soil, which seeds to stock for next year, along with a warning that a tractor part will need replacing in the next month. And where is the farmer? He or she is shepherding all this technology. The role of the farmer has expanded beyond planning and carrying out the physical work of growing crops. Now they oversee the technology on the farm, using the data it supplies to make informed decisions. Does this sound like a vision of the future? It’s happening today. The role of British farmers As global populations grow, there is an increasing pressure on farming to become clean and efficient. Supermarkets are driving prices down while regulations become stricter. Food safety scandals shake up consumer confidence, and there is a growing anxiety around the use of antibiotics. All the while it becomes easier and cheaper to import food and other goods from faraway countries, which calls into question the role British farmers have to play in this new world. Innovative technology has a vital role to play in addressing all these issues. Precision farming has the potential to supercharge production. It can minimise waste and maximise the yield of a plot of land of any size. And speaking of antibiotics – if you know which cows are likely to get sick, you will medicate only those who really need it. Similarly, AI can predict which seeds should be planted together to ensure that not only the crops themselves are healthy, but that they become part of a vibrant wider ecosystem. By taking the lead in this global development, British farmers can revolutionise their industry, and protect the environment that is at the heart of their work.

Who owns the data? Say you are driving your tractor (or indeed your tractor is driving itself) across your field. It registers the growth of your wheat. Do you own that data? What’s more, do you own your tractor? Farmers are justifiably concerned about data ownership. We have seen how useful data gathered from farms can be. What if a company, which you are paying to predict the yield of your farm, shares that information with your competitors? What if traders in financial markets get hold of the data from thousands of farms and use it to manipulate prices? Legislation has a role to play here. John Deere was involved in a case where farmers wanted to modify the software on their tractors. John Deere argued that, rather than owning the tractor outright: “the vehicle owner receives an implied license for the life of the vehicle to operate the vehicle.” In a bid to protect their copyright, they seemed on track to eliminate consumer involvement of any kind! The government will have to work together with the agricultural sector and the providers of technology, in order to come up with sensible solutions. Funding and implementation This February, in a speech at the National Farmers’ Union’s annual conference, the government announced an investment of £90 million in agritech. There are big, exciting opportunities ahead. The changes heralded by Brexit could be a catalyst for technological innovation, as British farmers seek creative solutions to compensate for a likely further decrease in migrant labour. The future of the sector is in the hands of farmers. It is up to them to embrace the advancements technology offers. They are the ones who will push Britain into the lead as the global agricultural sector faces unprecedented challenges.

Creative Quills help tech companies to position their brand with strategic content. We take your technical ideas and products and make them accessible to your target markets.


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New applications of technology are increasing productivity and sustainability in the agricultural, horticultural and aquacultural sectors.

PHOTO CAPTION:

Drones are just one example of technology that is making farming more efficient.


Making an impact with data. The Business and Local Government Data Research Centre has been granted the opportunity to continue its impactful work.

B

ased in the Knowledge Gateway, the Business and Local Government Data Research Centre (BLG DRC) was set up in January 2014 and has been funded by the Economic and Social Research Council (ESRC) to provide data research expertise to organisations nationwide.

The Centre is delighted to announce that building on their successful work and knowledge exchange activities, they have been granted an extension to continue, and look forward to working with business and local government organisations to enhance their knowledge data and practice. The Centre specialises in novel research in analytics, data science and big data, and with a network of expert academics from the University of Essex, University of East Anglia, University of Kent, and the London School Economics, utilise novel methodologies to: • • •

Support skills training Enable knowledge exchange, and Discover how organisations can make better and more efficient use of their data

You can find more about the BLG DRC’s previous case studies on their website, where we’ve recently created prediction models to aid the data for the Youth Homeless Data Bank, and have helped communities prevent potholes with a new pavement system: http://www.blgdataresearch.org/services-2-2/knowledge-exchange/case-studies/ To find out how the Centre can help you use data to inform data policy decisions, and tackle difficult challenges faced by business and society, please get in touch at blgdataresearch@essex.ac.uk

“We are already instigating projects with multiple new organisations, including SMEs that contribute towards our local community, and charities that tackle crucial issues such as the young and homeless. The Centre is proud to continue uniting the knowledge of our world-leading academics within industry, to create lasting and meaningful change.” NIGEL KIRBY , PROJECT MANAGER


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Top of their class. School improvement company, TT Education Ltd., has scooped a prestigious national award for the work they do with schools.

From a head office base at the University of Essex’s Knowledge Gateway, TT Education work all across the UK and internationally, providing continued professional development training and consultancy for primary school teachers, both in the state and independent sectors. The Education Investor Awards – the prizegiving ceremony of which was held in October at the Hilton, Park Lane – is an internationally recognised awards ceremony for companies working in the education sector. Family-owned company, TT Education, were ecstatic to have won the coveted ‘Best School Improvement Provider’ trophy. Managing Director, David Maytham, was thrilled to receive the award: “I started TT Education with the support of my investor, Graham Keene, five years ago. From an idea on a piece of paper, it’s grown to a team of over forty consultants, supported

by a fantastic head office team of thirteen. The aim of TT Education was always a moral one – to support schools and teachers and ensure they are able to provide a superior quality of education to the children in their care. That hasn’t changed, despite all the challenges of working in a market that has seen budget cuts year on year. I’m so proud of the work we’ve done and of the amazing team we’ve built.” The company was also shortlisted for an Amazon Growing Business Award, in the ‘Bridges Positive Impact’ category.

“I’m so proud of the work we’ve done and of the amazing team we’ve built.” DAVID MAYTHAM, MANAGING DIRECTOR


Is your data working for you?

Haven Gateway Partnership

The new TALE scheme was officially launched last month at a Parliamentary Reception in London. Logistics SMEs can benefit from grant funding up to £60,000.

Business leaders from East Anglia and the South East gathered at the House of Commons (Wednesday 14 November 2018) to attend the launch of the new TALE scheme. The Parliamentary Reception was hosted by Will Quince MP (Colchester) and the programme was officially launched by Jake Berry MP, Parliamentary Under Secretary of State & Minister for Local Growth for the Ministry of Housing, Communities and Local Government. TALE (Transport and Logistical Efficiencies) is a new £6M business support scheme for Small and Medium Enterprises (SMEs) in logistics, supported by the European Regional Development Fund (ERDF). It challenges companies by asking ‘Is Your Data Working For You?’ and providing ways to exploit data to improve profit margins and reduce costs. This could be by installing freight tracking software, or employing staff with data expertise to analyse operations and develop a new service, for example. The scheme is aimed at SME companies in freight haulage and distribution, as well as manufacturing and engineering industries with a significant logistics

function, in Norfolk, Suffolk, Essex, Kent and East Sussex through New Anglia and South East Local Enterprise Partnerships. TALE can offer grants up to £60,000 to qualifying businesses from a budget of £1.9million towards their data-use project costs. Projects will drive efficiency and aid decision making with the aim to launch new products, improve productivity and create jobs. TALE offers a free data assessment, delivering diagnostic support analysing current data sources and use in the business and recommending better data exploitation. Free places are available to businesses on a series of workshops delivered by two of the leading centres for the practical application of data in industry: the University of Essex with their expertise in data analytics and the University of Kent with their expertise in cybersecurity. SMEs can apply to join via www.tale.org. uk or request a visit from the dedicated team of Business Support Facilitators who are ready to visit their business and develop plans.


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“I am delighted to host the launch of TALE which will help businesses in this vital sector to become more efficient through better use of their data. This is a really exciting opportunity as part of the launch of the Transport And Logistical Efficiencies Project: important for SMEs to learn more about this project and how you can get involved. It is fundamentally about the power of and use of data. The aim is to work with 200 SMEs across our two regions.” WILL QUINCE, MP

“Transport operators will consider their most important assets the trucks and tractor units they use - if they are standing idle, they are not earning. But they also have another asset which they will have built up without perhaps being really aware of it – the data that their business generates. TALE offers a real opportunity for SMEs to explore the data they have and take advantage of the expertise offered by our delivery partners, the Universities of Essex and Kent, through our free workshop programme as well as grants of up to £60,000.” GEORGE KIEFFER, CHAIRMAN OF HAVEN GATEWAY PARTNERSHIP


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DECEMBER 2018

Address book.

A1 inRecruitment Group TT Education MSX International

B1

B2

Knowledge Pathways International

Lanpro

BUNA Coffee

Slingo Originals

B4

B5

Europlan UK

Universal Web Design

Stonehaven Technology

Mondaq

B3 Essex Chambers of Commerce

SmartNE Akenham Creative Quills

C1 Haven Gateway Partnership

C2 The Start-Up Hub Teaboy Games Sketchbook Games

D1 WillisPalmer

ESRC Business and Local Government Data Research Centre

Shark Infested Custard

Institute for Analytics and Data Science

D2

D3

Sanderson & Co

Process Safety Solutions

05 POV Digital Edition: December 2018  

News and views from Parkside Office Village, Colchester, Essex. This edition introduces James Cracknell, the new interim Start-up Hub manag...

05 POV Digital Edition: December 2018  

News and views from Parkside Office Village, Colchester, Essex. This edition introduces James Cracknell, the new interim Start-up Hub manag...

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