How can we improve transport in Britain GeoVation camp summary
NSC Insights Generation Service‘from Problem to Pitch’A summary of the iScout facilitated support of the GeoVationChallenge: ‘How can we improve transport in Britain?’.March 2011
In this document• What happened before the GeoVation Camp (pg 3–10)• What happened at the Camp (pg 11–64)• What happened after the Camp (pg 65)• Feedback (pg 66–72)
What happened before the GeoVation camp• We ran a problem ‘Pow Wow’ The goal of a problem Pow Wow is to ‘unpack’ a challenge, such as improving transport in Britain, and discover within it, a range of valuable problems; those which if met provide value for all parties. We spent time with people who have perspectives on transport modes, government policy, sustainability, technology systems and much, much more. We spent fours hours at the Transport Museum in London, discussing and capturing a whole range of issues in response to the question ‘What are the barriers to developing transport solutions that have a positive environmental, social and economic impact?’. At the end of the session we had 115 ‘raw’ problems. We subsequently clustered these under five broad themes (Modes of Transport/Human Behaviour/Economics/Infrastructure/Users’ Experience) and distilled them into 24 new problem statements. These stated what the problem was and why it mattered. They were used at the Camp to help the innovators really think about how their ideas connected to issues that mattered. In the images that follow, a sample of the 24 problems are shown. For the full set please visit: http://www.geovation.org.uk/geovation-challenge-problem-framing-workshop/
Sample from the ‘Modes of Transport’ themeWhat is the problem? Why does it matter?How do you design a better bike There are too many immediatefriendly ‘eco system’ that barriers to bikes being moreencourages mass adoption of widely used: they make youcycling? dirty; cycle routes can be unsafe; weather makes it unpleasant; you are limited to what can be carried. In London alone 23 000 bikes were reported stolen in 2010 with unreported thefts estimated to add another 40 000 to 60 000.
Sample from the ‘Human Behaviour’ theme What is the problem? Why does it matter?How do you break entrenched It often takes a dramatic eventhabits and allow people to have to jolt us out of our daily routinean experience from which new, and adopt a new behaviour (amore positive habits will form? strike, an accident, volcanic ash...) but we soon slip back into old habits. Scientific research shows that a habit takes from around 30–45 days to change.
Sample from the ‘Economics’ theme What is the problem? Why does it matter?How do you break the desire for Radical solutions enable betterquick returns and enable a much economic, environmental andlonger term approach to social value may take decadesinvestment that meets the needs and £ billions but those in powerof urban and rural communities? work in much shorter cycles (of about five years…).
What happened at the GeoVation camp• 155 ideas were submitted to the GeoVation website• These submissions were written descriptions of the idea• The judging panel invited a shortlist to develop them further• 19 teams then took part in the camp itself
Objective:To support a selection ofinnovators to develop their ideasfor the opportunity ofinvestment.
What happened at the GeoVation camp• We structured activities around the components of innovation We believe that Innovation is a product of finding the best problem, responding with an excellent solution and then executing it in order to scale it and make it viable from a business perspective. Our summary equation for this is I = P x S x E. As innovators had previously submitted ideas to the GeoVation Challenge website in written form only, we felt it important to create activities that brought those ideas to life. At the same time, we wanted to challenge participants to ensure they really had thought about problems and were given an opportunity to build on their ideas. Where possible, we also wanted them to prototype aspects of their thinking in order to demonstrate to the judges a degree of robustness. Further information about the Challenge can be found on the GeoVation Challenge website here. Over the following pages, there are selection of images which show in chronological order how the Camp unfolded from the initial gathering on the Friday night, to the pitches on Sunday afternoon.
We assembled at Ordnance Survey head office on Friday25 March 2011
Chris Parker from Ordnance Survey welcomed everyone…
Sean Miller from iScout reminded us of the structure
‘Treats for travellers’ closed out a very engaging afternoon ofpitches…
After the pitches, Roland Harwood, the Judge Panel Chair,said closing remarks and made thanks to all who’d come.He advised that all participants would receive notificationof whether they would be invited to the showcase, alongwith feedback from the judges, within 48 hours.
This duly happened, and the teams who were invited backto the GeoVation Showcase on 4 May 2011 (for the chanceto pitch for and be awarded a slice of £150 000) were:• Crowd-sourced cycling solutions• @ccessAdvisR• FixMyTransport – Anywhere!• Carbon Voyage: Sustainable Mobility Platform• Mission:Explore Nature using the National Cycle Network• OurMeetingPoint• London Cycle Map Campaign• Personalised Travel Plans for Business (myPTP)• My Parcel Centre (Abbey Couriers)• Route en RouteFor more information on the finalists and what happened at theShowcase, please visit http://bit.ly/ijvzr5
What happened after the GeoVation camp• Feedback sought to improve future camps In addition the very positive informal feedback given by participants at the end of the weekend we also followed up with a short online survey. Feedback was extremely good with some small suggestions for improvement made. A sample is included in the appendices.• Lessons learned for next challenges In addition to gathering feedback from participants, the GeoVation team also reflected on the weekend. For example this experience of both the Camp, and the Pow Wow that preceded it, had a bearing on how we manage communications with participants in future Challenges.• Camp activity refinement This was the second Camp run according the I = P x S x E formula but run at much bigger scale (22 teams as opposed to 5 previously). To accommodate four times as many teams in the same overall time, we changed elements of the Sunday. Judges had parallel sessions with teams ahead of their pitches in order to keep the pitching session to schedule. Overall this was felt to work well but we are aware that the larger number of teams brought a greater breath of how well formed or otherwise ideas were. We want to find ways to keep this diversity (from fledgling idea to business development) without disadvantaging anyone.
NSC Insights Generation ServiceOnline camp surveyIn the two weeks following the camp, an online survey wasdistributed to all participants (idea developers, idea supportersand judges).The following slides show some of the feedback taken fromtheir responses regarding various aspects.
NSC Insights Generation ServiceOn the design of the camp and the support received‘Everyone involved in running the weekend was very helpful andsupportive. iScout were excellent facilitators.’‘It felt like the organisers had done a great job of pullingtogether all of the right ingredients (people) for the innovationto flow.’‘I was very grateful for the extra support from everyone, theywere great, however, asking idea developers what support theymay need could have highlighted some needs that may nothave been available.’
NSC Insights Generation ServiceOn the venue‘Lovely place but far too far away from most people. A more centralvenue would have made travelling easier and less expensive.’‘The venue worked well, however some of the rooms were a littleuninspiring. But there was enough space and it was verycomfortable.’‘The venue was pretty good, however, the first part (problemexploration) could be done in a big room where all the teams couldcooperate with each other… help them to put aside their ideas for amoment and deeply/broad understand the central problem theywere dealing with.’
NSC Insights Generation ServiceOn what was the ‘Aha!’ moment from the weekend‘Helping the teams understand the user perspective.’‘My Aha moment perhaps came later when I thought a low techversion of my idea might be more successful.’‘Saturday afternoon getting support from all of the variousexpert advisers who made me realise that more of the conceptwas technically feasible than I had initially realised.’
NSC Insights Generation ServiceOn how to make it better‘It was fine - dont think much needs to be changed.’‘To have had a room of experts to could visit, like a surgery.’‘Make it clear exactly what the judges/competition will belooking for… if the competition is looking to provide the somefunding for a only business venture, and it not interested insupporting and collaborating on an academic research project,then this should be clear.’‘Shorten it to one day and combine with the final.’‘Make the camp slightly longer – perhaps a third day.’
NSC Insights Generation ServiceOn advice you’d offer future participants‘Keep your idea simple and focus on presenting a minimal viableproduct, with a twist.’‘To be absolutely clear in very simple terms what your ideaactually does. As a judge it was not always possible tounderstand this from the Pecha Kucha presentations.’‘Be open minded and go with the flow.’‘Bank plenty of sleep before you come, bring plenty of people toengage in the creative process, bring a stack of business cards:you will want to contact many of the people you meet.’
NSC Insights Generation ServiceOn why you’d recommend the Camp to others‘We found the other competitors to be very open and genuinelyhelpful; there was absolutely no sense of people trying to “get oneover on each other2”, just a very collaborative and simulatingenvironment.’‘It was a brilliant time, and gave me new insight into innovationsand innovators as well as improving my own skillset.’‘I learned a lot – it was very interesting to be outside my comfortzone and interact with such a wide range of people.’‘I think it is of benefit for many personal development reasonsbeyond just developing the idea.’
Thank youFor more information on any of the information contained in this document, please contact:David Townson: email@example.com 07974 741315For more information on the GeoVation Challenge in general and this camp in particular, please goto: http://bit.ly/mrfQBG or contact: firstname.lastname@example.orgThe GeoVation Challenge is funded by:The GeoVation transport challenge was supported by: