Digital Challenge finalists announced
The ten national finalists for the digital challenge - to create a world class example of a 'wired up community' - have been announced by DCLG minister, Angela Smith.
From a job matching service in Norfolk to an online health monitoring service in Bristol, all the challenge bids were asked how they could use new and evolving technology to make a real difference in their communities.
The announcement marks the second phase of the Digital Challenge which will now see the ten national finalists share £1.2 million of government funding, from the Department for Communities and Local Government, to strengthen and develop their proposals. The race is then on to become the Digital Challenge winner, who will receive £7 million to put their proposals into action.
Stand out examples of how to make a difference were:
- Norfolk's job matching service which enables those seeking work to register their details and when a job comes up matching their skills a text alert is instantly sent to their mobile.
- In Bristol a remote health service which could monitor patients vital signs or allow them to self diagnose to complement support from district nurses to give them greater independence and reassurance.
- Children in Ealing could benefit from a personal payment card facility which will monitor their eating habits including their nutritional intake and promote healthy eating.
Announcing the finalists, under secretary of state, Angela Smith, said, "I have been really impressed with the standard of all the challengers represented here today. They have all shown how new and evolving technology can be used to meet the challenges facing our communities."
The minister also announced the launch of the Digital Challenge network, providing an opportunity for all those who entered to continue to explore ways of implementing innovative ideas. Added Smith, "All of the 79 bids received offer a goldmine of ideas and imagination, and we need to draw on these going forward. I particularly want to encourage all those who submitted a bid to continue working on their vision and implementing the exciting ideas alongside their partners in the public and private sectors. This is why today I have announced the Digital challenge network which will bring together all sectors involved in e-innovation and ensure that excellent ideas which have been developed so far are not left to fester."
The ten finalists are:
- The Virtual District of Stratford-upon-Avon - Stratford on Avon District Council
- City and Rural Communities Using IT - Birmingham City Council (Lead Authority) & Shropshire County Council
- My Norfolk - Norfolk County Council on behalf of the Norfolk Ambition County Strategic Partnership
- Sunderland – Where people matter - Sunderland City Council
- Success Through Diversity Enabled by Digital Innovation - Ealing Council
- Connecting Bristol – Building Momentum for Change - Bristol City Council on behalf of Connecting Bristol and the Momentum Group
- Connected Nottingham - Nottingham City & Nottinghamshire County Council
- STREAM – Transforming Neighbourhoods - Kingston Upon Hull City Council
- Digital MK - Milton Keynes Council One-Manchester - Manchester City Council, in partnership with Tameside MBC