Strand-Aldwych Data Springboard

An Innovative Data Sharing Initiative

A team of KCL Informatics researchers launched a new project with Westminster City Council, the local government entity responsible for the Strand-Aldwych redevelopment. Together, we are creating a pilot for the Strand-Aldwych Data Springboard, an innovative data sharing initiative that will deliver innovative solutions with local data that benefit those who are part of or affected by this data, while also educating all these stakeholders about the benefits of data sharing.

“This area of work is a key council priority for the local authority which aligns with short and long-term ambitions of the transformation scheme and is foundational to our wider management model which involves various stakeholders and communities in the area.” - Kirsten Zeller, Westminster City Council

Image showing person using a computer at a desk.

The project was conceived through our shared work as part of the Smart Working Group, where we explore opportunities to innovate with data during and beyond the completion of the redevelopment, and its combination with our expertise in data innovation and AI, through projects such as Data Pitch, Data Stories, MediaFutures, and EUHubs4Data.

We work with both public and private stakeholders of the redevelopment, as well as the general public, to explore the challenges and opportunities the Springboard could address. We run a series of workshops in which we discuss how the different local stakeholders could benefit from data sharing, what challenges we should focus on, how it should approach questions of data ethics, and what legal framework would be most suitable to achieve these goals

Our first workshop on 13th May identified key challenges, including increased efficiencies, supporting local businesses and governance, making data interoperable, and establishing accessible feedback routes. Participants identified a series of relevant datasets, including traffic flows and footfall data, weather and pollen forecasts, and accessibility. Ethical challenges were seen primarily in ensuring that the Springboard has core values embedded in its framework, including a duty of care for those who might be affected by the data, and especially does not put vulnerable groups at risk.

We will continue the discussion with workshops for the rest of the year. If you would like to participate get in touch!