We’re delighted to be supporting a new Bristol-based initiative that has just received funding to explore the impact of digital technologies on society.
The Bristol Digital Futures Institute (BDFI) will be based at the University of Bristol’s new Temple Quarter Enterprise Campus, offering space and facilities to research and test how technology could be utilised in the future.
As the Bristol Living Lab, KWMC already supports people to imagine new ways of using technology to tackle society’s challenges, and we’re looking forward to collaborating with the BDFI and communities across the city to explore how future technologies could impact people’s daily lives: from our communities and workplaces to our health and environment.
Our Director Carolyn Hassan explains: “we want to make sure that everyone – particularly those who are least engaged with digital technologies – have a say in shaping our city and its digital future.”
To set up BDFI, University of Bristol has received a £29m grant from the Research England UK Research Partnership Investment Fund (RPIF), which has received £71m of match funding (£16m of philanthropy and £55m from 27 partner organisations).
BDFI will be housed in a new 6,000sqm space on the university’s Temple Quarter campus. Facilities will include an interactive auditorium and the world’s first ‘reality emulator’ to enable the study of future digital systems, such as how we could protect ourselves against cyber-attacks on critical infrastructure.
BDFI aims to generate 30 new collaborative projects per year.
Professor Nishan Canagarajah, Pro-Vice Chancellor for Research at the University of Bristol, said: “This funding announcement is fantastic news for the University, the city of Bristol and the wider region. It provides an opportunity to think about our futures differently – to build on expertise from right across the university in collaboration with industry, government and people in the City; to think about the world we are creating with digital innovation and ensure that this ethical, socially responsible and inclusive – helping to support the creation of future ‘tech with a conscience’.”
The organisations that have pledged their support and financial support for BDFI include: Aardman, Ashley Community Housing, Airbus, ARM Ltd, Babassa, BBC, Bristol Media Group, Black South West Network (BSWN), BT, Business West, Digital Catapult, Dyson, Evolyst Ltd, Frazer-Nash Consultancy, Gregg Latchams Solicitors, Hargreaves Landsdown, Knowle West Media Centre, National Physical Laboratory (NPL), Quin, System C Healthcare Ltd, Thales UK Ltd, Three, TM Forum, Toshiba, Ultrahaptics Ltd, Watershed, West of England Combined Authority (WECA).
BDFI is being funded through Round 6 of Research England’s flagship capital investment scheme the UK Research Partnership Investment Fund (UKRPIF).
For more details visit the University of Bristol Bristol Digital Futures Institute website.