Smart-cities-solutions-challenge-uk-chinaSouth West businesses have been invited to identify and deliver smart city solutions that overcome the challenges faced by Chinese cities, and then present their ideas to Chinese business and government decision makers. But you have to be quick, the closing date is Friday 2 January 2015!

As part of the UK-China Smart cities challenge successful SMEs (Small and Medium-sized Enterprises) will be invited to go to Wuhan in China in the first week of February 2015 to further progress their solutions with these Chinese cities. This should provide a fantastic opportunity to open the Chinese market up to UK smart cities business.

The challenge is part of a Foreign and Commonwealth Office project led by Manchester City Council with involvement of Bristol City Council, three Chinese cities who are ‘smart city pilots’ and Digital China (a large ICT company leading on smart city solutions in China with links to the key Ministries).

The two challenge categories

The challenge has two different project categories:

Category 1: ‘Development’ projects

These are potential demonstration projects, which require a level of development and testing in a real life setting. Projects do not need to be fully worked up but need to demonstrate potential impact across Chinese cities as well as indicating a willingness to collaborate with Chinese partners in their design, development and deployment.

Category 2: ‘Quick Win’ projects

These should be previously tested and proven solutions that can be adopted within a relatively short time-frame within the Chinese market. Proposals need to show the impacts which these have had and how they could potentially be rolled out across Chinese cities.

What’s the final aim of the challenge?

The plan is to develop a bottom-up co-designed model for smart city solutions, products and services addressing the specific challenges faced by Chinese cities. This collaborative approach between UK and Chinese cities is aimed at developing at close quarter an understanding of the challenges faced by cities and developing joint solutions to these through workshops in the UK and China.

Specifically, from the categories mentioned previously, they are seeking to identify and develop:

  • 10 bespoke solutions to the challenges faced by Chinese cities, around which we will jointly work up into funding propositions by 30 June 2015
  • 8 examples of existing good practice or products and services which can be adopted as ‘quick wins’ within the Chinese market.

Interested in applying? Check out the UK-China Smartcities project website or download the guidance and application form  for the UK SMEs Smart Cities Solutions Challenge. You have until the 2 January 2015 to submit your application.