Mayor of London launches 2019 Civic Innovation Challenge, in partnership with Social Tech Trust

  • Innovation programme leverages London’s world-leading tech for good scene, bringing together tech startups, leading organisations and London communities to co-create innovative solutions to transform London communities.
  • The Civic Innovation Challenge is a collaboration between cross sector partners – Mayor of London, Social Tech Trust, Microsoft, the Metropolitan Police Service, the Greater London Authority, and Transport for London.
  • Tech startups will benefit from a five-week curriculum delivered by industry experts, the opportunity to validate their solutions and a route to market.

The 2019 Civic Innovation Challenge has been launched today by the Mayor of London, Sadiq Khan at a reception, hosted by partners, Microsoft, at their flagship UK store on Oxford Circus.

The programme, developed and delivered in partnership with Social Tech Trust, offers start-ups the opportunity to work alongside leading organisations and co-create innovative tech solutions with London communities.  Now in its second year, the Civic Innovation challenge is seeking solutions to countering violent extremism online, helping London meet its housing needs and making the movement of goods and services in London safer, cleaner and more efficient.

Up to 40 startups selected to take part in the programme will benefit from business support and a comprehensive curriculum of workshops and training sessions from Social Tech Trust and Microsoft.  They will work alongside Challenge Partners from the Metropolitan Police Service, the Greater London Authority, and Transport for London to access data, networks and expertise. Participants will co-create their solutions directly with market users.

Winners will be announced in March 2020, with each Challenge Partner awarding one team the opportunity to work with them for a further two months to test, validate and roll-out their solution. They will receive £40,000 to support them in this process.  Applications are open until 12th December 2019.

The programme presents an exciting opportunity to drive social transformation in London communities.  With 36 percent of tech investment in the UK focused on London[i], there is a wealth of tech talent and innovation that can be harnessed to tackle some of the significant and persistent social challenges facing Londoners.

Ed Evans, CEO of Social Tech Trust said, “Like many cities around the world, London is facing a number of complex social challenges.  In a city which is already a thriving hub of tech innovation, we have a brilliant opportunity to leverage that talent in pursuit of social transformation.  I am confident that the Civic Innovation Challenge will demonstrate how the drive to address social challenges can inspire tech innovation and improve the lives of Londoners.”

London’s Chief Digital Officer, Theo Blackwell, said: “The Civic Innovation Challenge is a unique opportunity for tech companies to tackle some of the most pressing problems facing our capital. I would encourage London’s tech talent to put their creativity to the test and help solve these challenges.”

The Civic Innovation Challenge is open for applications from 11 November to 12 December 2019.  Apply now.