Objective

To make Cambridge the best, small, digitally-connected city (in the world) with a universal, seamless, scalable digital connectivity infrastructure.

Digital Connectivity Project Group Chair: Faye Holland – Founder & Director, Cofinitive

Faye Holland is founder of Cofinitive Ltd a Corporate Communications Company based in Cambridge and is one of Cambridge’s Most Influential Business People. As chair of the Connectivity Group in Cambridge Ahead Faye spearheaded the #CambsNotspotter campaign; is currently working with the team on a future of work project; and is a regular contributor to many other Cambridge Ahead initiatives.

Project Team Members

Dr David Cleevely CBE – Cambridge Entrepreneur*
Charles Cotton – Chairman, Cambridge Phenomenon International Ltd*
Bob Driver – CEO, Cambridge Wireless
Brendon Fowler – Campus IT Infrastructure Lead UK & Enabling Functions, AstraZeneca*
Noelle Godfrey – Programme Director, Connecting Cambridgeshire & Head of Digital Infrastructure, Cambridgeshire County Council
Jon Holgate – Head of Networks, University of Cambridge*
Professor Peter Landshoff − Fellow of Christ’s College and Professor Emeritus University of Cambridge*
Jane Paterson-Todd – CEO, Cambridge Ahead
Tim Winchcomb  Technology Strategy Consultant, Cambridge Consultants*
Richard York  VP Embedded Marketing, ARM*

* Member/Member organisation

Project Overview

The Digital Connectivity project group aims to oversee the leadership and governance arrangements for a digital connectivity roadmap to enable academia, businesses and individuals to communicate seamlessly across networks, devices and uses throughout Cambridge and surrounding areas. We will also engage in strategic relationships (with service providers, mobile operators and third parties) required for Cambridge to become digitally-connected city.

The group are specifically investigating ways to improve connectivity and technology for our businesses, and the quality of life of our employees and citizens. A desired output  is to drive equality through digital, connectivity and technological adoption.

Progress to date

Over the last two and a half years the Digital Connectivity Group has been working on defining a set of projects aimed at making Cambridge a significant digitally-connected city.

A core function of the group is supporting Cambridgeshire County Council in applications for funding to further improve digital connectivity adoption. Early in 2018 Cambridge Ahead successfully supported Connecting Cambridgeshire’s efforts to secure future funding to expand the footprint of Gigabit (1000mbps) capable fibre across Cambridgeshire and Peterborough with the Local Full Fibre Networks Challenge Fund. In late-spring 2018, our members also contributed the 5G Urban Connected Communities Bid.

In 2018 contributing to the Call for Evidence and Call for Responses of the CPIER was also important to ensure that digital connectivity was as much on the agenda as other transport and infrastructure requirements.

As a group we are also collaborators across other activities - for example in 2017 we collaborated with LSCC/ UK Innovation Corridor in a workshop on progressing digital connectivity across the broader region; and more recently have also supported Peterborough in a Digital Cities Challenge Bid.

#CambsNotspotter

In March 2016, we launched #CambsNotspotter – a crowdsourcing initiative aimed at identifying gaps in mobile and broadband connectivity across the region. The initiative encouraged Cambridge employees and residents to participate by providing usage data from their home, office and mobile connections to understand current connectivity provision and determine development requirements. The data gathered enabled us to evidence how actual connectivity compared to that provided by the operators to Ofcom, as well as identify any specific local challenges.

#BetterMobile Hack

In addition to collecting millions of data points via the #CambsNotspotter initiative to enable us to map the current user experience of mobile signal, we also wanted to think about the future. Our aim was to be visionary in exploring how we will use devices at home, at work and in our social lives. The result was our #BetterMobile hack event which took place in November 2017.

Into the future

Our over-arching Group objective remains to make Cambridge the best, small, digitally-connected city – where smart things happen. Our activities in this area will include:

  • Oversee the leadership and governance arrangements for a connectivity roadmap to enable academia, businesses and individuals to communicate seamlessly across networks, devices and uses throughout Cambridge and surrounding areas.
  • Engage in strategic relationships (with service providers, mobile operators and third parties) required for Cambridge to become digitally-connected city.
  • Look for opportunities to improve connectivity and technology for our businesses, and the quality of life of our employees and citizens.
  • Identify ways of improving equality through digital, connectivity and technological adoption.

Research & Publications

CONTACT US

info@cambridgeahead.co.uk
01223 653023

PRESS ENQUIRIES

Sarah Brereton, Director, Limewash
01223 813 557

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