April 17, 2019
Siemens has launched a new web-based application which reveals the readiness and potential of six major cities to embrace digitalization and develop new ways of living, working and interacting. The Atlas of Digitalization is based around the interconnected themes of Expo 2020 Dubai – Mobility, Sustainability and Opportunity – and assesses how the fourth industrial revolution has already impacted urban life around the world, and the potential it could have in the future. more…
April 12, 2019
The UK’s regional cities are competing harder than ever with London to become the location of choice for the tech sector. According to CBRE’s report ‘Tech Cities: Exploring tech hotspots in the UK regions’ Manchester ranks number one amongst the top 10 UK tech location outside of London, but Scotland features highly with Glasgow and Edinburgh in second and third position respectively. Birmingham has risen three places, from seventh to fourth position but smaller conurbations such as such as Reading, Oxford, Cambridge, Southampton, Brighton and Bracknell also feature, based on their concentrations of tech employment, tech businesses and high education levels. More cities are competing for the very top spots in the ranking
April 10, 2019
The question of what makes a city great is an old one but has never been asked more than it is right now. It is usually couched in terms of the urbanisation of large parts of the world but it is important for other reasons too, not least because the urban environment is an increasingly important part of the virtual workplace many of us now inhabit and offices themselves increasingly resemble the agglomeration of spaces we have typically associated with our towns and cities. Recently, McKinsey published a report into urbanisation, based largely on the usual premise of the proportion of the world’s people involved, but it is an issue that touches all of our lives and in unexpected ways.
March 29, 2019
The economic performance of UK cities is increasingly dependent on the skills of their workforce. Cities across the UK face the challenge of both attracting and retaining high-skilled talent. The Great British Brain Drain investigates migration within the UK, specifically within cities. It finds that many university cities lose their graduates to London, with this movement especially strong for the highest performing graduates with 2.1 or 1st class degrees from Russell Group universities. Despite this, most university cities experience a ‘graduate gain’: they gain more graduates than they lose.
March 25, 2019
Alongside the uncertainty surrounding Brexit there have been many predictions that London will be particularly hard-hit by the economic fallout. However, a new analysis by savoystewart.co.uk of Knight Frank’s The London Report 2019 proposes London will continue to attract the interest of occupiers and investors alike. The research suggests that London saw greater volumes of commercial real estate investment than any other global city in 2018 – with over £16 billion of transactions. more…
March 21, 2019
The UK government has published its Future of mobility: urban strategy, which sets out its approach to working with innovators, companies, local authorities and other stakeholders to develop benefits of new urban mobility technologies. Alongside publication of the strategy, it has also launched a £90 million competition for cities to deliver Future of Mobility Zones, which follows £60 million awarded to 10 cities across the UK via the Transforming Cities Fund. It aims to support local leaders and industry to trial new mobility services, modes and models through the creation of up to four future mobility zones. more…
March 18, 2019
The UK has risen one place, to third, in a global ranking of most promising countries in the world for technology breakthroughs that have a global impact. KPMG’s 2019 Technology Innovation Hubs report sees the UK trailing slightly behind the US and China, in a ranking of countries expected to produce the most disruptive technologies. The UK and Japan were almost tied in last year’s survey with the UK coming in 4th place. This year however, the UK moved ahead to secure the bronze place, whilst Japan was ranked fourth, Singapore was ranked fifth and India dropped from third place to sixth. more…
March 12, 2019
The boom in the UK jobs market is coming to an end just as the Brexit countdown reaches its final stages. According to the latest ManpowerGroup Employment Outlook Survey, the national Outlook for the second quarter of 2019 has fallen to +4 percent, on a par with the weakest levels of confidence seen in recent years. More worryingly, the negative Outlook in the Business and Financial services sector – which employs nearly a fifth of all UK workers – suggests jobs are set to be lost in Britain’s most important sector. The report found that the Finance and Business Services sector has fallen five points to -1 percent, only the second time in the last decade it has been in negative territory.
March 11, 2019
Despite higher living costs, southern English cities such as Oxford and Exeter lead the country in their ability to provide opportunities for people with low skills. A new report from the Centre for Cities on low-skilled workers claims that employment opportunities are greater for people with fewer or no qualifications in southern English cities than those in the North or Midlands. The report Opportunity Knocks? claims that, despite higher living costs in cities in southern England, their stronger economies create significantly more jobs for people with fewer qualifications. more…
March 6, 2019
Smart Cambridge and researchers from the Cambridge Centre for Smart Infrastructure and Construction (CSIC) at Cambridge University have announced plans to create a digital clone of the city to explore how congestion and commuting times can be reduced and air quality improved. Researchers at the University of Cambridge-based CSIC and officers from Cambridgeshire County Council’s transport, sustainability and planning departments are examining how digital technology and data can be used to support decisions and make improvements.
The study will focus on the creation of a digital twin prototype, combining traditional urban modelling techniques, new data sources and data analytics. The prototype will include the recent trends of journeys to work in Cambridge, including how people of different ages and employment status travel to work and how different factors affect their travel. It will also explore future possible journeys to work based on transport investment, housing developments and how flexible working and new technology may impact commuting. A web-based modelling platform will also visualise future development options and give people an opportunity for feedback.
“Digital twins have the potential to help cities develop more holistic policies which will assist in addressing some of the very real challenges urban areas face such as congestion, pollution and the need to become more sustainable,” said Dan Clarke, strategy and partnerships manager for Smart Cambridge.
CSIC led a workshop with council officers in December which helped them to understand local requirements and how they can deliver a digital twin prototype which responds to imminent city challenges and supports the policy goals of improving air quality and reducing congestion.
“We are now working on the prototype and will deliver an initial version in eight weeks,”said CSIC research associate Dr Timea Nochta. “We will continue to develop it alongside the council so that it can be used to its full potential and so that officers feel confident in asking the right questions for technology to answer.”
Claire Ruskin, executive board member for the Greater Cambridge Partnership, and CEO of Cambridge Network, said: “We have worked together to collect and understand information before, and Smart Cambridge is delighted to be working with university teams again. We can begin developing next-generation tools for supporting plans and policies to give people alternatives to their cars to help improve journeys, reduce congestion and improve air quality in Greater Cambridge.”
The project has been funded by the Ove Arup Foundation and the Centre for Digital Built Britain. The work of Smart Cambridge is supported by the Connecting Cambridgeshire programme, led by Cambridgeshire County Council, with investment from the Greater Cambridge Partnership. CSIC is an Innovation and Knowledge Centre funded by the Engineering and Physical Sciences Research Council, Innovate UK and industry.
March 4, 2019
The volume of transactions in London’s West End was down 45 percent, the lowest for January in over 10 years. This is to be expected with the continued ongoing Brexit negotiations, according to Savill’s, who expect to see a lower volume of transactions complete over the first quarter of this year. Despite this, space under offer still remains well above the long-term average, with 237,000 sq ft going under offer during the month. This held the overall total at just over 1.2m sq ft, giving a strong indication that leasing activity over the course of 2019 will remain robust. Pre-lets accounted for 42 percent of the overall sq ft let in January and there were five transactions to the Insurance & Financial sector and four to the Tech & Media sector.
February 27, 2019
Robust economic growth and rapid urbanisation over the last few decades has resulted in the creation of a number of megacities in Asia. Against this backdrop, 33 out of the projected 49 megacities will be located in the region, according to GlobalData, a data and analytics company. The City Economics Database reveals that megacities were home to nearly 8.35 percent of the world’s population and contributed 15.50 percent to total global GDP in 2018. Of the world’s 40 megacities in 2018, 26 were located in Asia. GlobalData forecasts that the number of megacities will increase to 49 and more than two-thirds of these megacities (including 19 in China and six in India) are expected to be located in Asia by 2025.