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Vicki DeBlasi,
Communication Lead, CityVerve

Welcome back to the CityVerve newsletter. It’s been another exciting month for the project as we're starting to see elements of our ‘This Is CityVerve’ citizen engagement campaign emerge. 

This initiative, which aims to help showcase the use cases being developed and build awareness of the project among citizens is soon to launch, and includes printed and digital assets that will introduce more local people to the CityVerve project!

We’re also planning on kicking off a public-facing edition of the CityVerve newsletter, for which we’d like to request your input. You’ll find more on this, and how you can be of assistance, below.

To help us continue spreading the word among the consortium and key stakeholders, please continue to share your updates on particular projects or events that you are involved in!
What’s happened?

Important milestones from the past month:

Artist selected for first CityVerve art installation

As part of the culture and public realm theme, CityVerve will be delivering two art commissions to the local community. Led by FutureEverything, the first artwork will go live this June and promises to visualise data collected from the project in a medium guaranteed to intrigue local citizens.

Following an artist residential with FutureEverything’s selected artist cohort, artists recently pitched their ideas to a selection committee, featuring members of the CityVerve consortium.

We are very pleased to announce that an artist has been selected and work is currently underway to finalise what promises to be a very exciting commission! Stay tuned for more details in the coming weeks about the artist and her plans.

CityVerve partners took over the “performance space” in Manchester Central Library
Ordnance Survey, Clicks + Links and Sparta Digital took over the “performance space” in Manchester Central Library in the first week in April for a morning drop in session.

Invitees from the city council and other public agencies came along to see the latest in mapping tools and 3D visualisation from OS and Clicks + Links respectively, with Sparta Digital showing their ‘city concierge’ application which was trialled at Chinese New Year in January.

Over the morning, senior stakeholders responsible for city centre services, public service reform, culture, policy, transport and data were able to view the mapping techniques - trying on a 3D headset for a virtual reality experience - and more importantly, speak with CityVerve technology partners about how best they could integrate new technology into their existing services.

FutureEverything finished the first phase of the series Community Forums
FutureEverything has just finished the first phase of citizen engagement, based around themed community forums, exploring CityVerve use cases, broader smart city themes and discussion around different possible futures for Manchester.
Find out more over on the FutureEverything site, where Vimla Appadoo reflects on the process and outcomes of the forums.
Marketing & Comms work 

‘This is CityVerve’

‘This Is CityVerve’ is a campaign designed to raise awareness and interest in the CityVerve project amongst local citizens. A core part of that is the development of a mini booklet, which sets out what the project is, where it will be based and how people can get involved. It’s now back from the printers and we're really excited to see it in the flesh! 

The leaflet will be distributed to public libraries, the council’s Customer Service Centre in the Town Hall Extension and local consortium members with public spaces (as well as on the website for you to link back to), so look out for our updates on this.

We're also putting the finishing touches to an accompanying animation, which we can't wait to share with the consortium before it goes live on our social channels and the CityVerve website!

To further support the campaign, we are working with local media to amplify the activity in the press, and you can expect to see CityVerve appear in the Manchester Evening News and other key press.

We will soon be sharing an update email with all consortium members about how this programme will be activated and how you can get involved. Thank you to all those who have helped on it so far – we couldn’t have done it without you!
Citizen Journalists initiative 

After receiving some great entries for our Citizen Journalism programme, we have whittled down the names to a shortlist which is currently going through the final review stage.

We look forward to being able to announce our line-up of Citizen Journalists soon!

CityCast – the smart cities podcast from CityVerve
We were up in Manchester this month for the fifth episode of CityCast, where we spent the afternoon picking apart the very meaning of what it is to be a ‘smart city’.
Rather than talking about cities of the future as ‘smart’, shouldn’t we be aiming to create something that we can describe as ‘wise’ instead?
Dr Joe Ravetz has been working on this subject for the best part of 20 years, and joined Rowena Burns in the studio for some hearty discussion on the topic.
We also reported from the show floor at Smart IoT London, and Vijay Natarajan of Sparta Digital took on the quick-fire ‘Meet the Partners’ challenge.
You can subscribe, listen and download via iTunes and Apple’s Podcasts app or stream this episode by clicking on the image below.


From Manchester to the world: CityVerve goes global
Some highlights from SXSW in Texas, MIPIM in Cannes and Smart IoT London in, well, London, where CityVerve partners went globetrotting to show off their hard work and talk about how Manchester is creating a blueprint for smart cities worldwide.


Last month saw the comms team secure three media briefings with key technology publications to give an overview of CityVerve and discuss the smart solutions that have already been implemented as part of the project.

These included interviews between:
  • Mark Duncan, Strategic Lead - Resources & Programmes, Manchester City Council and Nicola Brittain, Freelance journalist at Diginomica
  • Nick Chrissos, Head of Innovation and Project Delivery Director, CityVerve and Tim Streather, CEO, SPICA and Melony Roque, Editor at Smart Cities World
  • Nick Chrissos, Head of Innovation and Project Delivery Director, CityVerve and Joe Clark, Reporter at Computer Business Review
We will be sharing the coverage for you all to read as and when it appears.

In the meantime, if you’re likely to be speaking about CityVerve to press, please do get in touch with the comms team and ensure that you are fully versed on the latest CityVerve messaging.
What’s coming up

CityVerve external newsletter

As part of our citizen engagement campaign, ‘This Is CityVerve’, we will be kicking off a public-facing edition of the CityVerve newsletter to help us spread the word to businesses and citizens of Manchester, keep them updated on the latest deployments, and develop further interest in the project. 

With this in mind, we’re asking – where possible – for you to share your lists of contacts who have signed up to receive information from your company via email as well as from “partners” and/or “third parties”, which CityVerve falls into on this occasion.

For more information or to make your contribution, drop the team at Chime an email.


Data Visualisation in the Smart City – Bringing Maps to Life
Manchester Informatics, in partnership with the Manchester Urban Institute, will be hosting the second in a series of events aimed at exploring the University of Manchester's work on Smart Cities on the 4th May.

Simon Navin, Smart Cities Projects Lead at Ordnance Survey, will be giving a demonstration of OS’s data visualisation and mapping work on CityVerve and beyond.
For more information and to RSVP please follow this link.

Wellbeing in the Smart City

A seminar and workshop on 'Wellbeing in the Smart City' will be held by The University of Manchester on Wednesday 10th May.

The event will bring together researchers, practitioners, technologists, and industry partners to showcase Manchester as one of the leading cities for both devolution of health & social care and the development of the smart city through the CityVerve IoT demonstrator

To find out more and RSVP please follow this link.
And don’t forget that there are many ways you can help us spread the word about CityVerve!
Support us on social media at @CityVerve 
Share your blog posts with us
Tell us about your events
Inform us of your press engagement

To get hold of materials, ask questions or contribute, please contact Chime

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