Scottish Government digital business accelerator funding winners announced
Nine digital business are to be supported to develop technology solutions to public sector challenges
Scottish Government, Victoria Quay - Image crredit: Scottish Government via Flickr
Nine digital businesses have been chosen to receive £15,000 accelerator funding from the Scottish Government to develop solutions to challenges facing Scotland’s public sector.
The funding is part of the Scottish Government’s CivTech pilot, which was launched in June to encourage private companies to come up with innovative technology solutions to public sector problems.
The aim of the project is to achieve a more collaborative working relationship between the public and private sectors by posing open challenges rather than putting pre-determined solutions out to tender.
In the second stage of the project, launched yesterday by finance minister Derek Mackay, the winning companies will be supported to develop their solutions over three months, as well as receiving further training in working with public sector clients.
CivTech received over 80 applications for the first six challenges set by three different public sector organisations, which cover environmental issues, health data and transport, with the majority of applications coming from Scottish-based small businesses.
Two more ‘wildcard’ challenges were later added in the field of resilience and cyber security and a ninth project addressing homelessness will also receive support.
Software development company Node on the Edge has been selected to solve a challenge by SEPA to come up with a solution to improve air quality in urban areas. It will produce a customisable workflow that will increase the speed of data processing.
SEPA’s other challenge, to make flood forecasting information better used by a wider audience, is to be taken on by RiverTrack, an Edinburgh-based software development and design company.
RiverTrack’s goal is to make flood information more easily accessible in a way that will benefit non-technical people, the elderly and those with limited access to smartphones, computers or mobile coverage.
NHS National Services Scotland (NSS) also set two challenges. The first, to get health and social care data and analysis to the wider audience, will be taken on by Symphonic, which will provide software that will allow NHS NSS to control precisely how they open and share data across boundaries securely and safely.
The other NHS NSS challenge, to make its data publications more accessible and appealing, will be addressed by Wallscope, whose solution allows the organisation to create a library of their information assets and use these in multiple scenarios with improved search, discovery and exploration of rich data sets.
Transport Scotland’s two scenarios, how to promote the tourist destinations along the A9 and how to use technology to design smart roads, will be taken on by Learn to Love Digital and xDesign respectively.
Learn to Love Digital will create a Highland Discovery app, while xDesign’s transport app will be able to detect potholes before they happen.
The two wildcard challenges will be taken up Wallet.Services, whose proposal is for an inter-organisational trust platform across the Scottish Government and public bodies enabled by blockchain technology, and Diddo, who will give users more control over their own information by providing guidance, automated lock-down and risk analysis.
For the homelessness challenge, StreetChange will create a new fundraising platform to enable local organisations who provide support to the homeless to raise finance for basic needs.
The accelerator stage of the CivTech project will be based at CodeBase in Edinburgh, the UK’s largest technology incubator.
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