London’s future economic growth depends somewhat on its ability to work smarter. The capital is working hard to blaze a trail for a smarter use of technology to improve services, liveability and business infrastructure; and Workspace is no exception.

London’s evolution as a Smart City depends heavily upon collaboration between businesses and devices. Gartner predicts that 2020 will have more than 9.7 billion connected things to deal with compared with the 1.1 billion in 2015, so the capital needs to utilise digital communication to enhance services and performance for its residents and businesses.

A Smart City is one which is able to collect, decipher and share data publicly. It’s one which allows businesses and governments to be better placed to make the right decisions and it’s one where residents and professionals themselves are better informed.

Boyd Cohen/Co.Exist break down the essence of a Smart City into the following: entrepreneurship and innovation; investment in green buildings, energy and urban planning; transparency with open data and investment in ICT; cultural vibrancy; mixed-modal access; and an inclusive society which embraces creativity.

Speed, flexibility and security of connectivity are at the top of the agenda for Workspace, as our customers too seek new ways to connect people, processes and data.

As the home to more than 4,000 New and Growing Companies across London, we have a duty to provide a digital infrastructure that offers business-class connected services to support growing businesses. A secure, super-fast and resilient network gives our 65-plus buildings with intelligent connectivity, allowing our digitally dependent customers to work how and where they want with the utmost freedom.

It’s an acknowledgment of the need for a smoother, more flexible working lifestyle that saw Workspace sign a new eight-year IT Managed Service contract with Excell Group this month. The deal continues an investment in connectivity upgrades across Workspace properties, including one of the UK’s first 10GB fibre connections and 1.3Gbs community Wi-Fi into a commercial multi-let building.

Investment in connectivity not only helps London’s infrastructure to provide what customers want today, but it also provides the capacity to prepare for the next wave of changes and needs in the future.

Every day, people in London generate data; data that’s useful to managing the city’s transport, social, economic and environmental systems. Technology is crucial to underpinning ‘smarter’ policies and solving London’s challenge to maintain its business competitiveness.

Fortunately, London boasts a world-class innovation ecosystem with practitioners working across a broad spectrum of digital industries and associated support services. It’s therefore the perfect environment for digital innovators to secure the talent they need to thrive and is one of many reasons why London was named the number-one city for digital entrepreneurship by the European Digital City Index 2015.

London is home to a raft of support networks and accelerator programmes all designed to help London tech companies flourish and provide a new dimension to life in the capital:

TechCityUK
A government-funded team supporting the growth of UK’s tech firms.

London Tech Advocates
A coalition of 2,100 expert individuals, this organisation supports tech start-ups and high-growth businesses in finding new investment and talent.

Entrepreneur First
Europe’s leading pre-seed investment programme for technical founders, turning technologists into start-up founders, Entrepreneur First are also a Workspace customer.

L39 Cognicity Hub
Created following the Cognicity Challenge, this hub champions the discovery, development and deployment of smart city technologies.

DigitalHealth.London
Set up with the aim of making London a global centre for the development and uptake of digital health technologies.

The Scale-Up Institute
A world-first organisation solely focused on providing support to growing companies looking to step up to the next level.

Two Smart London Innovation Networks (SLINs)
Networks designed to connect innovators with organisations to deliver London’s very best regeneration projects.

Digital Greenwich Accelerator
A free business support programme for digital SMEs in smart cities, giving them the chance to develop and test new products in the Royal Borough of Greenwich.

Velocity Health
Telefonica’s digital start-up accelerator, this programme gives selected start-ups up to £64,000 of investment, including access to mentors, coaches and investors.

London has long been at the forefront of global transformation and its adoption of smart technology is a commitment to embracing innovation for the capital’s business ecosystem and its delivery of new housing, transport and social infrastructure.