Liverpool's bold ambition
LF107 | Half a century after the Beatles, Liverpool's looking to make an impact with civic AI and social care data.
Annemarie Naylor has been introducing me to big ideas - such as the potential value in health data - for years, and is consistently tackling edgy topics that years later go mainstream. So when she announced she’s made the move to help run a new civic health innovation lab in Liverpool, I was all ears.
This is a city with a storied past and is now tackling numerous social issues; it’s on the front lines of the UK’s challenges with health and social care. It has numerous assets such as an expert university faculty, 50,000 students, proximity to Manchester, a super computer, government support and funding, a committed NHS and an energetic and popular metro Mayor in Steve Rotherham. With that context, CHIL is ‘tackling global health challenges with civic data and innovation’, and have bold ideas about making this happen, with a particular focus on social care data and ‘civic AI’.
This week I was invited to join (virtually) a meeting they had with a number of stakeholders from across the social + care + data landscape, including local government, NHS and care organizations. Together with thought partners Caroline Dewing (Future Agenda) and Sarah Barns (RMIT), we shared some perspectives on the global city innovation landscape around data, civic AI and social care innovation. We were impressed at the enthusiasm and ambition in the room.
A summary of the points we made:
Learnings from cities on the front lines (e.g. Barcelona and Melbourne) of what to do, and also what not to do (referencing Google’s Sidewalk Labs in Toronto).
There’s a massive amount of siloed data that could be repurposed to improve ‘healthy habitats’ - ie. planetary as well as human health.
Given the de-globalization trend, Mayors are likely to soon be on the front lines of wellness innovation.
There needs to be new trusted intermediaries between citizens and Big Tech, and cities could play a role, though will need help.
The conversation was part of a larger event that focused on global collaboration and positioning Liverpool, in Annemarie’s words, as a ‘data-driven and tech-enabled test bed geared to evidencing and realising the future of care’.
This is a bold vision but this team seems well-placed to deliver, and are keen to forge global connections with other cities who share a similar goal.
I will be watching with interest as Liverpool takes steps to become a world leader in shaping innovation in the space. Whether it will have as much of an impact on the world’s consciousness as the Fab Four had… will be up to Annemarie and her colleagues.
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