International Geospatial Innovation Awards

Geovation announces winners at first ever international ceremony

5 minute read
Four start-ups and lifetime achievement winner from a global field competing in four separate geospatial categories were crowned at ceremony in London.

Successful start-ups who showcased the powerful impact geospatial data has around the world lit up the International Geospatial Innovation Awards at 1 Moorgate Place, London.

Viviana Laperchia from UP42
Award winner Viviana Laperchia from UP42

The awards, which saw almost 100 entries from 26 different countries, recognised innovative new enterprises in fields as diverse as census data collection through to tracking down friends in busy night clubs.

The winners were as follows:

Category 1 - Places for the Future: (solutions that help build the cities and communities of tomorrow)

Winner: Where You At.

Where You At solves the frustrating problem of losing friends in busy venues. With precise indoor mapping capabilities, users can locate their friends down to the floor-level, bar, or cubicle. Where You At works without phone signal and includes timestamped SOS alerts - helping make nightlife safer for everyone.

Highly Commended: The Future Fox's ‘Create-a-Town'

The Future Fox is a UK social impact technology that launched a new, transformative feature for its digital engagement platform PlaceBuilder. For the first time, communities are being brought into the challenging discussions on the trade-offs when designing new developments for their town, via a fun five-minute experience on their mobile phones. Residents of former coal mining town Shirebrook in Derbyshire were able to use it to create and submit their own vision for a new, cost-neutral part of town.

Category 2 - Land, sea and air (developments that preserve and protect the environment)

Joint Winner: UP42

UP42 was founded in 2019 to provide quick and easy access to optical, radar, elevation, and aerial data. Its APIs and Python SDK enable customers to build and scale their solutions. The direct impact of easier and quicker access to high-resolution satellite imagery has made it possible to improve livelihood of cities and communities across the globe.

Joint Winner: Global Plastic Watch

Global Plastic Watch is a digital platform that maps the world’s plastic pollution in near real-time using a unique combination of satellite imagery and artificial intelligence. It uses deep learning to identify, measure, and monitor plastic waste sites on land, supporting local communities and national agencies with the data required to stop plastic before it enters our oceans.

Highly Commended: gtfs2emis

The gtfs2emis model is a novel bottom-up method of estimating emissions from public transport, whether that’s single routes or entire public transport systems. The model can help inform policies for low-carbon transitions, such as assessing how much and where emissions could be reduced by electrifying or renewing older vehicles.

Category 3 - Resilience, safety, resource quality & protection of life

Winner: WorldPop

WorldPop maps populations across the globe to ensure that everyone, everywhere is counted in decision making. The group partners with governments and UN agencies and has produced almost 45,000 open geospatial datasets, complementing traditional sources with dynamic data for mapping.

Highly Commended: Cirrolytix Research Services

Cirrolytix is an innovator in data-driven health risk management. Its Aedes research project predicts dengue outbreaks, and its versatile framework has applications for managing other vector-borne diseases and health crises.

Category 4 - Individual contribution to open geospatial innovation

Winner: Dr. Qiusheng Wu

Dr. Qiusheng Wu an Assistant Professor in the Department of Geography & Sustainability at the University of Tennessee, Knoxville. His research interests include geospatial data science, remote sensing, and environmental modelling.

Dr. Wu is a strong advocate of open science and reproducible research. He has developed and published various open-source packages for advanced geospatial analysis. Furthermore, Dr. Wu goes further to engage people in his open-source projects by creating countless video tutorials, to aid student and users in leveraging his work. His open-source packages for advanced geospatial analysis have gained huge popularity, with over three million downloads and 2,700 stars on GitHub.

Highly Commended: Taslim Salaudeen

Taslim Salaudeen is a notable and driven pioneer in GIS technology in Nigeria. His vision is to apply Geo-Spatial Intelligence, Geo A.I to promote Entrepreneurship in order to solve grass-root problems in Africa. He spent the past six years invested in deep research and innovative engineering of field mobile mapping solutions that work within Africa and align with its native culture and ecosystem. He developed the CensusPad geo-application which reduced the time taken to set up mobile technology for a census in Nigeria from three months to 10-15 minutes.

OS’s Chief Commercial Officer Paul French said: “What these awards show so well is just how transformational geospatial data can be. It’s so exciting to see the range of innovative ideas and applications being created and shines a light on the people and projects making a real tangible difference to the areas in which they operate. These awards have been truly global, and it’s fantastic to see geospatial innovation happening all over the world. It’s been a great event, and a wonderful celebration of the geospatial sector, and I’m looking forward to next year already.”

More information is available here about Geovation’s International Geospatial Innovation Awards.

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