• Technologies

Accelerating Safety Solutions

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We aim to work collaboratively, but how can you collaborate without knowing what’s out there?

I recently got the opportunity to learn more about the (other) amazing initiatives going on in the world of safety and resilience at the Lloyd’s Register Safety Accelerator Launch. The attendees were an impressive mixture of industry specialists, tech start-ups and innovation experts.

After introductions from Lloyd’s Register Foundation, Lloyd’s Register and their innovation partner, Plug and Play, we launched into the ‘lightning talks’ with two tech start-ups pitching their safety products. The first was from RealWear, who design augmented reality, wearable computing for industry – think of a headset with video, audio and voice recognition, providing guidance and reliable feedback between people on site and other offices. Next was GuardKnox who provide automotive cyber security – preventing hackers from taking over your car remotely.

Once we’d wrapped our heads around these exciting new ideas, Lloyd’s Register ran their first Innovation Challenges round, laying out 3 specific challenges to improve the safety of life on board ships and floating platforms. Through Plug and Play, the Safety Accelerator will match small technology companies with safety solutions to larger corporations who are looking to adopt new ideas to keep their staff and customers safe. Interested companies who think they can address these challenges should apply for this first round by the 5th August.

For me it was exciting to be brush up against the world of tech start-ups and see some emerging themes and ideas which may become mainstream very soon. It was also a great way to stay in the loop as developments in resilience and safety speed ahead. I’m looking forward to seeing how the Lloyd’s Register Safety Accelerator gets on and the interesting technologies it will support.

Categories: Events Technologies

Data, technology and resilience – challenge or opportunity?

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Peter Sondergaard, Gartner Research, said in 2011 that “Information is the oil of the 21st century, and analytics is the combustion engine“.

A few years on, many people would agree with it, as we see examples everywhere– smart cities, Internet of Things, Big Data, Artificial Intelligence, autonomous cars and, in sum, the ‘Fourth Industrial Revolution’, which is fundamentally changing the way we live, work and relate to one another.

With such a big dependence on data and its analysis, will this revolution actually help critical systems to continue functioning when something unexpected happens, or when they are stressed?

This is a complex question to answer, and one which we initially addressed in our Understanding the Landscape report. We suggested that the digitization of electrical infrastructure creates real-time information, but can also expose physical infrastructure to cyberattacks. The Global Risks Report 2018 from the World Economic Forum is in agreement, as cyberattacks have been classified as the third highest global risk in terms of likelihood and the sixth in terms of impact.

The different ways in which smart infrastructure solutions can impact on the resilience of infrastructure and the people who use and operate it (after Cousins et al. 2017)

However, when smart technology is embedded everywhere, the challenge goes well beyond that. Extreme weather events and natural disasters are classified at the top of the global risks landscape, with the highest likelihood and biggest impact. Critical infrastructure, and by extension the technology embedded in it, will therefore need to be able to cope with these risks – and this is where technology should help to create resilience rather than fragility.

With such a transformative change in the way critical infrastructure will need to be designed and operated, this question remains open for the Resilience Shift.
One of the outcomes that the Resilience Shift hopes to achieve is the wider adoption of transformative technology that can enhance, rather than compromise, critical infrastructure system functionality.

We are exploring how we can contribute to understand this question through our activities. If you have ideas that can contribute to this outcome, do get in touch.

Categories: Technologies