CityVerve is a £10 million Innovate UK project that will see Manchester transform into a ‘smart city’ demonstrating the power of IoT technologies to revolutionise and improve city services.
Cities have long been producers and consumers of ‘big data’ whether it be about its population, economy, transport networks, flows of people along with the impacts of climate change on the built and natural environment. Over recent years the emergence of what people term Smart City systems are increasingly ‘data driven’. Citizens create much of these data, carrying out everyday transactions, mostly without their knowledge or informed consent. Big data can be derived from a variety of data stores: social media, consumer sites, search engines, smart phone apps, smart utility meters, credit card transactions, CCTV, etc. and whilst big data offer many as-yet-unexploited opportunities for smart cities, the risks to individual privacy and freedom also be taken seriously. This is a conversation that is only beginning to surface as citizen-consumers become more aware of how information relating to them is being collated and used for commercial or political interests.
Cities can of course benefit hugely from all of this data, but only if they have the methods, tools and techniques to properly interrogate, analyse and interpret this data in meaningful ways. Manchester's Data Science Institute are at the forefront of developing such methods through our urban data science theme to support cities in fully utilising the new opportunities that exist within data science to support cities and urban areas in understanding this emerging area.
Projects: The University of Manchester has a strong track record of involvement in developing smart solutions in cities with projects like CityVerve and Triangulum Project. Being smart means making better decisions, and the University of Manchester has developed a series of projects that use data to help citizens and governments achieve their goals including: DIMMER, SMARTiP, TellUs, Climate Proof Cities, Manchester Cycling Lab, and Map for England.