Hull’s first digital and technology conference is coming soon.
The Hull Digital website comments that at this moment in time there is still a lot of things to iron out, plan, organise and fund, but the good news is, is that the ball is rolling! This is great news for the city and I hope an opportunity to address some of the issues outlined below.
Hull Digital, Jon Moss in particular, has done wonders in bringing together the local ‘Digerati’ – i.e. the enthusiastic and passionate people who promote digital information and communications technology everyday. Hull Digital has enabled individuals to network with their peers – techies and non-techies.
Hull Digital has demonstrated that Hull and the East Riding is home to people with tremendous knowledge, expertise and insight. The imagination, innovation and ambition for digital change obviously exists locally.
I think the idea of a local conference could be an opportunity for all those intrerested in seeking an improved digital infrastructure support for that local passion. Crucially, it can help draw up a digital #hullvision that can lead to new and improved digital services to the public in the area.
However, at the moment there seems to be lack of any clear direction or strategy in the City of Hull and the wider East Riding that the majority can agree too.
Most people would agree that massive benefits will take place during the digital revolution and that near instant communication and online communities will transform the way we work, live and play. What is missing is the analysis and detail of the steps that have to be taken locally in order to progress forward and take advantage of opportunities.
What exactly is the potential for future digital development? What services should the public be expecting in 5 – 10 years? Is the future fibre or Wimax (or both)? What new up and coming technologies threaten to upset the applecart!? What research has been done to date on information and digital needs? What new consultation needs to happen? What technologies will people actually use; not everyone would use super-fast broadband – or would they if given the opportunity?
The ‘vision’ for Hull and the East Riding’s Digital Future needs to be created and agreed – people need to be able to sign up to a consensus of opinion; a common mission, priorities agreed and key actions scheduled.
The first step is to imagine what the future might hold. An exercise could be held to imagine the year 2020 and Hull’s Digital Future. Those interested from public, private and voluntary/community sector organisations – professionals and unpaid enthusiasts – could be invited to brainstorm the needs and possibilities.
With the ‘imagined’ future charted and mapped, we could then plan the steps and key actions that need to be taken in the next 5 years, 3 years and12 months in order to reach the ‘vision’.
Investment from multi-partner sources could be sought to tackle individual priorities and steps.
The benefits of taking this ‘vision-making’ route are obvious – everyone pulls together in the same direction rather than act in isolation or simply be led by commercial considerations.
I hope that the proposed new digital event will be an opportunity to address at least some of the issues above.
What do people think?