Leading the way in urban analytics

The Alan Turing Institute has announced a new urban analytics research programme, led by the University.

Professor Mark Birkin, Director of the Leeds Institute for Data Analytics

University announced as leader on Alan Turing Institute programme. November 2018

The Turing is the UK’s national institute for data science and artificial intelligence (AI), with nine strategic research programmes in areas such as AI, health and public policy.

Urban analytics is the latest priority to be announced and will be led by Professor Mark Birkin, Director of the Leeds Institute for Data Analytics (LIDA).

Professor Birkin, from the University’s School of Geography, said: “The Institute has announced its urban analytics programme at an opportune time. New data from ‘smart cities’ is providing transformative insights all over the world. 

“Devices ranging from wearable tech to smart tickets will permit deeper understanding of behaviour and lifestyles, economic prosperity, mobility and health – with positive impacts for business, planners and policymakers, as well as the scientific community. 

“The Turing is ideally placed to exploit these opportunities through the advancement of methods ranging from visual simulation to artificial intelligence. 

“I am looking forward to working with the Turing’s unique network of universities and external partners to create an ambitious programme of academic investigation with real world impact.”

Data analytics expertise

The University and the Turing have a shared commitment to make great leaps in data science research in order to change the world for the better.

The partnership is supported by LIDA, along with contributions from researchers and data scientists across the University. 

LIDA supports a research portfolio in excess of £45m, and brings together more than 150 researchers and data scientists.

It includes the Medical Bioinformatics Centre, funded by the Medical Research Council, and the Consumer Data Research Centre, funded by the Economic and Social Research Council.

Professor Lisa Roberts, Deputy Vice-Chancellor: Research and Innovation, said: “LIDA has put the University at the forefront of data science. 

“It has become a national asset as a leading research and development institute, with the capacity to drive many aspects of the UK Industrial Strategy and to change lives through harnessing the power of data.”

Turing Fellows

It was announced in October 2018 that 24 researchers from the University will begin fellowships at the Turing.

Awarded to individuals with proven research excellence in data science, AI or a related field, they will spend a portion of their time at the Turing, developing projects alongside, and in collaboration with, other researchers.

Professor Lisa Roberts added: “Being a university partner of the Alan Turing Institute provides opportunities for the University’s researchers to work closely with the Institute’s academic, industry and policy partners and undertake the most ambitious, impactful research possible.”   

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