Scottish Geospatial Network Integrator Project

AGI Scotland at its regular Board meeting held on Friday 4th December welcomed a presentation by Dr Ashley Stewart of Optimat who have been awarded the contract to run the Scottish Geospatial
Network Integrator project.

The GNI (a working title) is a jointly funded initiative by the Geospatial Commission in conjunction with Scottish Enterprise and the Scottish Government.

In summary the GNI aims to:

• help build a dedicated network of geospatial organisations across Scotland
• improve collaboration, knowledge sharing and the profile of the Scottish GI sector
• develop the supply chain by identifying and bringing organisations together who can help develop and innovate with geospatial technologies
• signpost potential growth opportunities

The GNI will use tried and tested approaches to integrate the latent GI network across Scotland in an effort to unlock a proportion of the estimated £11 billion of value to the UK’s economy each year from geospatial services. The new network is also a key commitment of the UK’s Geospatial Strategy that was launched in June 2020.

Ashley’s slides from the presentation are available here.

Ashley identified the purpose of the Integrator as being to “leverage location data as an enabler of innovation and to create greater efficiency in the products and services delivered and utilised by
businesses and the public sector in Scotland. ”

Ashley further emphasised the need for a “partnership approach” involving public, private, academic and third sectors to drive innovation, promote greater efficiencies, unlock skills and enable
economic growth. Optimat will arrange communications, events and engagement with trade bodies in other industries; identify strengths, signpost support and showcase successes. The next steps will be sector and company profiling mapping Scottish GI capabilities, needs and challenges.

AGI Scotland heartily welcomes this exciting development aligning so well as it does with its’ own efforts and ambitions to foster a thriving and self sustaining GI industry within Scotland – indeed
building on our long and proud tradition.

AGI Scotland intends to collaborate closely with the Optimat team and we would like to encourage AGI members to join the current LinkedIn group as well as watch out for other direct
engagement opportunities early in the new year.

The AGI Scotland committee would also like to relay our early festive best wishes to our readers and trust that 2021 will prove to be less challenging than 2020 has been. Keep an eye out for news of our 2021 annual event.