• Steps to GeoVation funding - watch the video
  • Green ventures get the green light to innovation funding
  • How can we encourage active lifestyles? See the 74 great ideas

Category: Challenge 2010-11

Could you be a GeoVation winner?

By , 12 April, 2013 8:00 am

GeoVation funding can help to get your innovative ideas off the ground.   We’ve recently published some case studies in which GeoVation winners, explain what happened after they won funding, and how they developed their ideas.

For instance, Foodnation were awarded funding in our ‘How can Britain feed itself?’ GeoVation Challenge.  Foodnation’s mission is to have neighbourhood Foodnation hubs within bicycle-riding distance of most households in the UK. It provides a platform to connect customers and farmers in their local area easily and allow them to make transactions to buy and sell local organic food and find fruit and veg box-delivery schemes around the UK. The idea came from Louise Campbell, who after receiving funding was able to set up the company in March 2011. screenshot of foodnation website

After securing funding, the first steps in the project were to obtain the data and build a platform for transactions to take place. The pilot website was thoroughly tested and feedback fed back into the development of the site.

Continue reading 'Could you be a GeoVation winner?'»

Innovate with GeoVation – the book!

By , 5 March, 2013 8:00 am

We’re really excited! For many months now we have been working on Click here to download booklet creating a GeoVation booklet to include information on  GeoVation Challenges and case studies on winning ideas – and now its published!

The booklet  has some interesting facts about GeoVation which has been running since October 2009.  In that time:

  • 1448 participants have registered
  • 509 ideas have been submitted
  • 57 teams have participated in GeoVation Camps and
  • 20 winners have been awarded a share of over £435, 000 in innovation funding to develop their ventures.

GeoVation Challenges are open to entrepreneurs, developers, community groups, government and individuals.  They are focussed on finding innovative and useful ways of using geographical information, including open data and tools, to build new ventures that will generate social, economic and/ or environmental value.

We’ve made the booklet available online,  so you can find out more about how you can innovate with GeoVation, the GeoVation journey,  the ideas we have funded so far and the people who make GeoVation happen.  We’ve also made the case studies available individually on line – see our case study map.

Download your copy of the GeoVation booklet and find out more!


Putting our innovation winners on the map

By , 14 November, 2012 8:00 am

In this post you can find out how many GeoVation Challenges we’ve run, how much innovation funding has been awarded, and where our GeoVation winners are on the map!

The GeoVation initiative was started by Ordnance Survey at the end of 2009 to encourage open innovation in addressing communities’ needs where geography is a key enabler.  Since then we’ve given innovation funding to 20 new ventures so they can develop their ideas.

To date we’ve run 5 GeoVation Challenges. We believe that for innovation to succeed it needs to have its foundations in a real problem worth solving and so, after our first ‘general’ GeoVation Challenge , we’ve themed our GeoVation Challenges. We’ve posed questions intended to generate social and environmental value from the ideas submitted, such as ‘How can Britain feed itself?’, ‘How can we transform our neighbourhoods?’ and ‘How can we improve transport in Britain?’ We’ve also run more location specific challenges, such as asking how we can connect communities and visitors along the new Wales Coast Path.

Over the course of these Challenges 1448 people have registered, 509 ideas have been submitted and 57 teams have attended 4 GeoVation Camps. Participants invited to the weekend GeoVation Camp benefit from being taken through a process that prepares them to be “Match fit to Pitch”  – able to describe their idea and the problem they are solving in a 2 minute ‘pecha kucha ‘style presentation

Continue reading 'Putting our innovation winners on the map'»

Encouraging innovation in transport – see the agenda for our free event

By , 20 September, 2012 8:00 am

link to event information




On Tuesday we posted a list of the great speakers lined up for our Collaboration and User Innovation in Transport event at the RSA in London on 24 September.

Today we can show you the Agenda. Find out whose on when and what they’ll be speakilink to registerng about.

If you would like to attend there are still a few free tickets available so don’t miss out on this opportunity to listen to these great speakers and share your ideas on the future of transport. Register now.



agenda image -opens PDF







Exciting speakers at our Innovation in Transport event

By , 18 September, 2012 8:00 am

 link to event information

We have an exciting line up of presenters at our free Collaboration and User Innovation in Transport Event at the RSA in London on 24 September. Find out more about them below:

Peter ter Haar, Director, Products, Ordnance SurveyPeter will be introducing the day. He is responsible for all aspects of product management at Ordnance Survey including product marketing, engineering and supply. He joined Ordnance Survey in November 2006, with more than 18 years’ experience in product management and business development in both the public and private sectors in GIS, location-based services and mobile technology. His previous roles include the head of GIS at the City of Amsterdam, and senior product and technical management roles in Geodan, Autodesk Europe and Intergraph Europe.

Richard Kemp-Harper, Technology Lead, Transport and Energy, Technology Strategy Board.  Richard will be navigating us through the day’s programme via a series of lively and interactive discussions. Richard has responsibility for managing a portfolio of innovative projects in the transport and energy generation and supply, and for planning potential future funding in these areas. Prior to joining the Technology Strategy Board, Richard worked for the Intelligent Transport Systems Knowledge Transfer Network, focusing on the themes of technologies for logistics and transport incident management. Richard has a background in academic research in chemistry, biochemistry and medical imaging and 6 years in web development and information management for Oxfam.

Speakers at the event include:

Glenn Lyons Associate Dean and Professor of Transport and Society at the Centre for Transport & Society CTS), University of the West of England.  Glenn’s research has focused upon the role of new technologies in supporting and influencing travel behaviour and on attitudes towards transport. A former secondee and expert advisor to the Department for Transport’s Transport Direct initiative, Glenn has led major studies for the DfT and UK research councils into traveller information systems, teleworking, virtual mobility, travel time use, user innovation, road pricing and public and business attitudes to transport. Glenn has overall responsibility for the Ideas in Transit project.


Continue reading 'Exciting speakers at our Innovation in Transport event'»

GeoVation winner Foodnation launch new website .

By , 17 September, 2012 8:00 am

Foodnation, who are one of our 2011 GeoVation ‘How can Britain feed itself?’ winners, have just launched their *Brand New* location based website  and app  The website can help you to discover where to source local food from suppliers in your area.

  • It’s location based!
  • You can search via town, county or postcode
  • Discover farms, organic food from local farmers’ markets and farms, find fruit and vegbox delivery schemes and much more near you
  • Search what’s in season and where to buy it
  • Share your favourite listings with friends!

Image of the Foodnation website

Continue reading 'GeoVation winner Foodnation launch new website .'»

Innovation in transport event speakers announced

By , 14 September, 2012 8:00 am

link to event information

The speaker programme for “Collaboration and User Innovation in Transport” has been announced. GeoVation is running the event at the Royal Society of Arts, London on 24 September 2012. The event is also supported by Ordnance Survey, the Ideas in Transit project, Department for Transport, Technology Strategy Board, and Forum for the Future.

With rapid developments in social media technology, smartphone apps, open data, and volunteered geographic information, in a context of doing more with less and doing that sustainably, the event considers:

  • The context for collaboration and user innovation with:

Ideas in Transit - Introduction to the prospects of user innovation. Professor Glenn Lyons, Associate Dean (Research and Knowledge Exchange), Professor of Transport and Society, University of West of England

Policy context for collaboration and user innovation. Andrew Goodwin, Strategy Unit, Department for Transport.

Continue reading 'Innovation in transport event speakers announced'»

New book with mission to explore food

By , 5 September, 2012 8:00 am

Lin to Mission Explore Food Book websiteMission:Explore Food is an activity cookbook that challenges children to go cannibal, cook in acid, make chocolate poos (including nuts and sweetcorn), ask the Queen for a swan and work out the best way to slaughter a lamb.

The book, a collaboration between 2 of our 2011 GeoVation Challenge winners Mission:Explore and City Farmers is billed as one of the most controversial and yet important cookbooks ever written for children and families.

Mission:Explore Food has been created to tantalise children’s taste for adventure and tests their understanding not only of where their food is from, but also of where it goes once they’ve finished eating.

“A children’s book that asks them to question if the pig they are eating has ever seen the light of day, make scary soup and keep a poo diary might sound controversial, but it’s vitally important that children think about their relationship with food and have fun while doing it. We all appreciate that children should know how to cook and eat well, but these are just two chapters in the story of our food. Unlike most children’s cookbooks that ignore the rest of the food cycle, Mission:Explore Food includes activities that encourage children to learn about growing, harvesting, waste and soil as well. An essential ingredient is appreciating that their/our choices affect people and places around the world too.” explains Daniel Raven-Ellison, one of the authors. Continue reading 'New book with mission to explore food'»

Mapping the Cyclescape

By , 3 September, 2012 8:00 am

Cyclescape is a web-based cycle campaigning toolkit  from Cyclestreets which received innovation funding in our 2011 GeoVation Transport Challenge.  The aim of Cyclescape is to enable campaigners to gather, discuss and make best use of dispersed knowledge about cycling problems, within the context of local groups.

The website is now at a late beta stage, with most features in place and usage heavy by those registered on the site. It is clear that this is going to be an innovation that is actually used and that it will genuinely solve problems.Image of Cycle Scape map area

The site will be formally launched at the main Cyclenation cycle campaigning conference in October, and groups are being added to the system on a by-request basis.

Using Cyclescape, people can report problems they face on the street/path network via the website. These issues appear on the map as locations that local groups will pick up. Subscribers are automatically informed of new issues that coincide with the places they cycle (having ‘drawn’ these on the map). Groups can discuss any issue in a variety of ways, pull in best practice, add in contextual information (e.g. planning applications), prioritise issues, and turn them into well-researched proposals that can be discussed with, and implemented by, Local Authorities.

Continue reading 'Mapping the Cyclescape'»

100 Reasons for a London Cycle Map

By , 22 August, 2012 8:00 am

London Cycle Map Campaign were one of the  winners of innovation funding in our 2011 ‘How can we improve transport in Britain?‘ GeoVation Challenge , and their idea is calling for a single,unified and easy to use cycling map of London -  the cycling equivalent of the London Underground Map.   

To encourage people to join the campaign Ben Irvine, editor of Cycle Lifestyle has put together a list of reasons for a London Cycle Map, which include things such as making cycling safer, more inclusive and using quieter back roads with cleaner air.  Find out more about in the guest post below: 

I’m excited to announce the completion of Cycle Lifestyle’s countdown of 100 reasons for a London Cycle Map.Image of London Cycle Map Campaign logo with link to site

The countdown has shown what a wonderful thing a Tube-style cycle map and network would be for London.

The benefits would range from helping non-cyclists give it a go, boosting the economy and complementing the cycle hire scheme, to making the capital greener, happier and healthier.

Please help us promote the London Cycle Map Campaign by spreading the word about the 100 reasons and our campaign film.

You could also proudly display the campaign logo on your website, join us on facebook or twitter, or otherwise tell your family, friends, colleagues, customers and MPs about the London Cycle Map Campaign and petition.

Ben Irvine, Cycle Lifestyle Editor