New Smart City Platform Ensures City Control, Policy Transparency and Citizen Trust
Kainos, a leading global provider of digital services and platforms, has been selected by Telensa, a leader in smart street lighting and smart city applications, as lead partner to build and support the City Data Guardian trust platform; collecting and protecting data as part of the Urban Data Project(UDP) smart cities initiative. City Data Guardian enables data transparency, empowering smart cities’ Chief Data Officers to build public trust and engagement. Delivered by a world-class consortium, including Microsoft, Telensa and Smart Cambridge, with technology from Qualcomm, the Urban Data Project is currently being rolled out in Cambridge.
City Data Guardian is a secure-by-design trust platform that puts cities in control of their data – applies privacy policies, ensures regulatory compliance and makes data available to improve services and drive future city revenues. The platform collects, stores, secures, manages and analyses data from Telensa’s Multi-Sensor Pods, which gather and fuse sensor data from devices, including camera and radar imaging, to measure levels of traffic, footfall, pollution and noise. Data processed at the edge is secured and transmitted to the platform, which applies stringent data governance and privacy controls to safeguard citizen data.
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Using machine learning and AI, data collected is used to provide a more accurate view of urban areas and how they are used. Put into practice, this could, for example, cut the time and cost involved in traffic surveys by providing live feeds, giving local authorities realistic and accurate traffic data, making them more informed on real-time road network and traffic management issues.
Jon Lewis, VP Urban Data at Telensa, says: “Privacy and trust should be central to any smart city project and cities should retain full control of their data. We are committed to enabling cities to protect potentially sensitive citizen data and ensure transparency around how data is used. It was imperative that we partnered with a provider that understood this requirement, had expertise in building secure cloud-based data insight platforms and IoT solutions, and the digital capabilities to build a flexible platform to meet our need. Kainos’ position as Microsoft UK Partner of the Year, experience in developing on Microsoft Azure, and pedigree in providing digital services to government, made them the perfect fit for this project.”
City Data Guardian is built on Microsoft Azure, using Platform as a Service (PaaS) features such as IOT Hub, and Kainos will provide ongoing support as it is rolled out to other cities. Key features of the platform include:
- Secure-by-Design Trust Engine: With a secure-by-design approach, the platform puts cities in full control of who receives data under which circumstances, enabling greater transparency.
- Digital Twin: The platform collects and analyses real-time urban data to create a ‘digital twin’ of the city, representing how people use the city, the mix of traffic on the roads, hyper-local air quality, noise levels and more.
- Analytics, Machine Learning & AI: The platform is integrated with AI and machine learning, helping to provide deeper analysis, correlating data insights and enabling what-if scenario planning.
- Modular Architecture: Both Telensa’s MSPs and the platform have modular architectures that future-proof smart city projects, allowing for new data-driven products and datasets to be introduced in line with the evolving needs of cities.
- Support for Open Standards: Easy integration between applications helping to connect and share data, where cities have granted permission.
- Collective Intelligence: As the Urban Data Project is expanded to other cities, data can be consolidated – with appropriate permissions – helping to build collective intelligence around how cities work. Ultimately, this data will help to build cleaner, safer and better cities in the future.
Russell Sloan, Divisional Director at Kainos, says: “We’re delighted to be working on such an ambitious project with Telensa, and to continue our close working relationship with Microsoft. We wholeheartedly support Telensa’s mission to strengthen citizen trust and policy transparency in urban data. The platform enables cities to apply technology in a transparent and ethical way, so that citizens can be confident about how their data is being collected and used. Once the Urban Data Project is rolled out to other cities around the world, the collective intelligence gathered will identify trends and patterns that could completely transform how we live.”