Milton Keynes celebrates the start of something SMARTChris Valentine, Tuesday 10 December 2013 | Annotate
KMi’s Professor Enrico Motta is the Project Director of MK:SMART, a 3 year, £16m HEFCE-funded project that will from Jan 2014 develop innovative ways of supporting the significant forecast growth in Milton Keynes.
Central to the Open University-led project is the creation of a state-of-the-art ‘MK Data Hub’ which will curate vast amounts of data from specially deployed energy, transport and water sensors, satellite sources, social and economic datasets, and crowd sourced data from social media or specialised apps.
The challenges of supporting growth without outstripping the capacity of the infrastructure, whilst meeting challenging carbon reduction targets, are very real. MK:SMART will provide key demonstrations of how we can meet these challenges with business and citizens alike.
A recent gathering of project partners and associated supporters at Stadium MK provided the opportunity to celebrate the work done to date in building a project consortium and creating a successful bid. It also served as the perfect opportunity to include in the conversation members of MK Council, local business leaders and representatives of SME collectives, all of whom will have a part to play in the 3 year project.
Lord Haskins, the Open University’s Pro-Chancellor, was on hand to say a few words wishing every success to the project on behalf of the Vice Chancellor. He was joined by Professor Tim Blackman, OU PVC Research Scholarship and Quality; Professor Enrico Motta, OU Professor of Knowledge Technologies; Bill Rammell, Vice Chancellor, University of Bedfordshire; David Hill, Chief Executive, Milton Keynes Council; and Pete Winkelman, Chairman, MK Dons, all of whom took the opportunity to thank all involved for the effort to date and to recognize the challenges and opportunities that this project brings to Milton Keynes.