As part of UCL’s Impact Series the CDRC in partnership with UCL Innovation & Enterprise and the UCL, Bloomsbury and East London Doctoral Training Partnership organised a networking event at Senate House, University of London yesterday (10/10/18).
The event titled ‘Data analytics, innovation and the impact on business and society’ sought to bring together academics and businesses in order to discuss key trends in data analytics and means through which partnerships between the two sectors can be forged.
The afternoon event included an impressive line-up of 17 academics, doctoral students and key industry speakers. They included a keynote from CDRC’s Dr James Cheshire who discussed geospatial visualisation techniques and introduced the work of the CDRC. Drawing on the theme of better collaborations between academia and the private sector, three speakers from industry (Virgin Media, Local Data Company, Movement Strategies) and one from academia (Kim Cassidy, Edge Hill University) presented their views on the CDRC Masters Research Dissertation Programme, having all been external partners at some stage. All four speakers described previous research projects and commended the impact that the programme has had on their own work. Following this four PhD students from the CDRC and the Bartlett Centre for Advanced Spatial Analysis described their research with commercial sector data.
The day also included a fascinating panel discussion chaired by UCL visiting professor Matthew Hopkinson. The panelists included Peter Marks, CEO, Deltic Group; Sophie Birshan, Head of Retail Analytics & Insight, John Lewis & Partners; Graham Seaton, Property Asset Manager, Ann Summers and Alex Loizou, Co-Founder, Trouva.com. The debate covered issues and opportunities that arise from the changing nature of Big Data and how retail has had to adapt. Finally, the event was concluded by CDRC Director Paul Longley.
The event was attended by 55 contacts from industry and a large number of academics. It is hoped that the event will help encourage more external collaborations either in the form of short-term masters dissertations, or longer-term research projects and data licence agreements.
*Matthew Hopkinson, Visiting Lecturer at University College London and facilitator of the event, has written a very interesting post event blog on ‘Why Academia and Business can learn more from each other‘.