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Context switching isn’t easy, but it has to be done

The last month or so has been difficult for everyone in different ways. For me, context switching has risen to new levels as I’ve been attempting to home school the kids at the same time as working – not an easy task! We have been very busy with initiatives in response to COVID-19: we have had a series of webinars to provide support on topics such as HR, mental health, and business funding options. I also held a webinar specifically on the data privacy and ethics impacts. You can view our past webinars here.

We’re now starting to look beyond covid-19 towards business resumption and new innovations. With the economy expected to contract and jobs likely to be lost across many industries, it becomes even more important to support and grow out the digital and data economy, both to increase digital and data jobs and to help support other industries, many of whom are going through a very rapid digital transformation. We are planning a webinar specifically aimed at start-ups. This will focus on investor readiness, creating a culture for success as well as different aspects of Intellectual Property, including considerations for data companies using licensed data. It is scheduled for 26th May.

In terms of innovation, there a few opportunities to highlight:

Some future opportunities to watch out for:

  • CivTech – Scot Gov’s mechanism for driving public sector innovation has pivoted to focus on COVID-19 needs. Problem statements are currently being developed.
  • A recent UK Govt funding call aimed to fund projects addressing a societal need emerging from covid-19. This had an record number of quality applications so more funding is being sought. Expect that there will be more like this in future.

Last week, it was hugely refreshing to hear from the companies who participated in the ScotlandCanDo AI for Climate Change challenge. This outlined six very different projects; all were compelling. The plan has always been that three of the projects will be taken forward into a longer second phase; many of them are interested in collaborators too. For more information on the work done by Trade In Space, Space Intelligence, IES, ISC, Topolytics and Arceptive / FilamentPD, you can watch the recording

I’m also continuing to meet with data companies – virtually of course. So do get in touch if we’ve not spoken and you’d like to understand more about the work of the data cluster. You can email me at:

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