Firms at the cutting edge of transport technology are being urged to travel back to the industry’s roots to discover how they can take advantage of a wealth of new opportunities.
Some of the brightest minds in mobility innovation will gather alongside centuries old railway engines and carriages at The National Railway Museum in York later in April, for a major conference intended to stimulate investment and spark innovation in the sector.
Yorkshire is regarded as a UK hot spot for transport innovation thanks to the county’s strong creative, digital, manufacturing and engineering sectors which are already driving forward new ideas in mobility. The area is particularly vibrant in the fields of apps, data and software development, all of which are at the forefront of impacting on how we travel in the future.
The location for the conference is particularly relevant: the transport sector is widely regarded as being in the grip of its biggest transformation since the onset of the steam engine, with the shift toward greener energy, the rise of digital services and pressure to hit emissions targets combining to disrupt traditional mobility systems.
The Procuring Innovation in Transport Conference on Tuesday, 17th April, is being organised by The Transport Systems Catapult (TSC), the UK’s Innovation Centre for Intelligent Mobility. The TSC was created to help businesses to collaborate, innovate and seize new opportunities across the transport sector both at home and abroad.
The event is aimed at SMEs, start-ups and organisations of all sizes which have links to Intelligent Mobility and the transport innovation sector, and will provide guidance on how to navigate complex public and private sector tendering procedures as well as offer advice on key areas to be aware of and how to work hand in hand with the TSC to make the most of commercial opportunities.
There will also be the chance to hear from transport industry experts and meet key decision makers from the public and private sectors who are looking to partner with or invest in smaller businesses.
TSC SME Programme Lead, Alex Weedon said: “Yorkshire and the surrounding areas are home to a growing hotbed of innovative businesses who we want to support to reach their full potential. We can help with collaborations, funding opportunities, networking with industry and Government agencies.
“The UK has an exciting track record in transport innovation and we hope this conference will give SMEs the knowledge and tools they need to exploit procurement opportunities that have traditionally been hard to access.”
The free conference, which is part of the TSC’s Transport Café series of networking and support events, will take place between 9:30am and 3:30pm. It is being held in partnership with multinational consultancy service, Arup, and is supported by the Institution of Engineering and Technology (IET) and York City Council.
As well as paving the way for businesses to access vital information on procurement and TSC innovation support, there will also be presentations from transport businesses such as Atkins, Amey and Alstom.
Transport is undergoing a revolution driven by technology – from autonomous vehicles to apps designed to make the way we access public transport easier and more integrated. It is being partly driven by the rise of the smartphone which gives users access to a range of potential new services and helps transport organisations gather vital data which can influence products and the way they operate.
The Transport Systems Catapult is one of an elite network of not-for-profit technology and innovation centre’s established and overseen by the UK’s innovation agency, Innovate UK.