Ruli Pennington - Talking Local Government podcast producer @CLGdotPOD executive producer @CLGdotTV. Passionate about better public services, devolution, chess, malt whisky, women's football.


Free Thinking 1 - Innovation strategies in the public sector


© CLGdotTV 2019

Joe Tibbetts and a studio audience quiz Llewellyn Morgan who leads a team of 21 innovators at Oxfordshire County Council's iHub innovation unit

This programme is available as a podcast. Go here to listen or download 

iHub is 80% externally funded, from sources like InnovateUK, Horizon2020 and the European Investment Bank. Only four posts are currently funded by OCC to run council activities like transport modeling, research to support policies, and business case development.

Other-funded work is looking into things like solving the problems of rural transport provision (now that austerity has removed many bus subsidies), piloting use of council assets to provide ‘mobility as a service’, as well as projects around green energy, public health, drones, and more.

The unit has developed provision of ‘innovation’ as a service to the rest of the council, helping service teams get to grips with the process of innovation so that they have the capabilities to carry forward projects once developed, by themselves.

iHub also collaborates with Oxfordshire’s universities and local industries to help identify and pilot innovations that can be taken up by the council or elsewhere, in an approach very much in line with the Government’s Industrial Strategy.

Working in collaboration with commercial brains and adopting a more commercial approach to innovation has been a new and instructive experience for the team.

This programme and podcast is sponsored by Rapier Systems.

Established in 2003, Rapier Systems designs, builds and manages Wireless Infrastructures for clients in the public, private and third sector. Customers range from hospitality to healthcare and aquaculture. An unwavering focus on wireless means we are trusted to manage Scotland’s largest Metropolitan Area Network delivered entirely by Wireless and we are the most prolific provider of public realm Wi-Fi in the UK.

Responsible for many industry firsts, including first use of true Gigabit Speed Microwave for the NHS in England and Wi-Fi at Sea for the renewable energy sector in Scotland


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