Lab partnership launched to support and grow open innovation in the east
28 September 2020
Anglian Water has announced the launch of a new partnership with not-for-profit organisation Allia Future Business Centre and its Innovation Lab in Peterborough. It will enable staff at Anglian Water and the local community to explore and innovate through the centre, supported by digitally-led initiatives which extend outside the local area.
The fully-equipped lab facility is available for innovation teams, start-ups and entrepreneurs to use for the creation and testing of products and solutions that tackle local and global challenges around environment, sustainability and social issues. The partnership supports Anglian Water’s ambitious AMP7 goals and builds on its aim to create and foster innovators, rather than just develop innovative ideas.
The partnership aims to support and stimulate open innovation and broader collaboration with other sectors in order to bring together different perspectives and transferable solutions to solving innovation challenges. The Lab will support initiatives and projects that align with the UN Sustainable Development Goals and aims to play a pivotal role in inspiring new generations of innovators who have the mindset and appetite to question, challenge and create.
From 3D printers, to mills and drills, Raspberry Pi and virtual reality, plus high-end digital media kit, including still and video cameras, lens, lighting and much more - the Innovation Lab has a wide range of state-of-the-art equipment for the development and testing of products and systems. A full-time Lab technician is available during office hours to provide hands-on advice and support for members in utilising the lab facilities to ensure they gain maximum value from using the space.
Jason Tucker, Director of Strategic Delivery & Commercial Assurance at Anglian Water, said: “We are delighted to be working in partnership with Allia to provide the Innovation Lab to companies, a collaborative workspace aimed at enhancing and developing innovative ideas. The partnership aims to provide a space to stimulate creative approaches to solving business challenges, as well as support to carry solutions through to their practical build.
“The work environment over the last six months has changed immeasurably and it is important that people have the space both in person and virtually to be able to develop ideas, the innovation lab provides a safe and controlled environment to allow this to happen.”
David Broach, director of Allia Future Business Centres, said: “We are delighted to launch the Innovation Lab at the Allia Future Business Centre in collaboration with Anglian Water. The lab aims to be the go-to place in Peterborough and the wider region for entrepreneurs, small businesses and larger organisations to innovate, collaborate and develop solutions to address the local, regional and global challenges of today.”
Membership is encouraged for established companies who engage in corporate innovation with dedicated teams, as it is ideal for innovation teams to work up proofs of concept and prototypes. Also welcomed are entrepreneurs and start-ups with their own novel or disruptive technology. Allia Future Business Centre is fully Covid-safe and the Lab will be operated within the government guidelines for social distancing, health and safety.