Innovation in transport is at risk because data is not
being shared in the sector, according to a new report commissioned by the
Transport Systems Catapult (TSC) and using analysis from the Open Data Institute (ODI) and Deloitte.
Fears around cyber security, lack of data literacy skills
and a legacy of viewing transport modes such as rail and road in isolation are
restricting the free flow of information, preventing the UK from unlocking the
full potential of its transport network.
According to the
TSC, overcoming these barriers could unlock £14 billion of benefits from new
innovations by 2025.
Technologies such as driverless cars, journey planning
apps and smart ticketing are all identified as opportunities which could be
fully exploited with a strong data regime that opened and shared as much data
as possible while respecting privacy.
The TSC is now calling on the government to work closely
not only with the Catapult, but industry to develop a data culture by providing
a framework for secure access to information and guidelines for opening and
sharing it; led by a new Mobility Data Hub to help the public and private
sector work together and breakdown the barriers.
The report showed that investment in data could lead to
faster journeys, lower emissions, improved regional connections and
opportunities for job creation in an emerging technology sector - without the
need for massive infrastructure building projects.
Andrew Everett, chief strategy officer at Transport Systems
Catapult, said: “Overcrowding on our rail network, congestion
on our roads and the ongoing struggle with pollution and climate change can all
be addressed by intelligent solutions which make use of the opportunities
afforded to us by new technologies.
“However, data is the key which unlocks the
door to these innovations and, under the current status quo, data accessibility
levels will remain inadequate for the UK to benefit fully. Issues such as cyber
security should be tackled head on to overcome this and a coordinated approach
between government and industry will be required to move forward.”
Sir Nigel Shadbolt, chairman and co-founder of ODI, said:
“Data is essential to realise the vision of a future transport
system that meets the expectations and exploits the capabilities of the
internet age. To help people and goods move easily, cheaply and efficiently
across every form of transport we need data to flow freely too. That data can
help everyone make better decisions: passengers, freight companies, transport
operators and policymakers.
“Failure to act on open data will mean poorer
quality services, reduced transport connectivity and a lost opportunity for the
UK to use intelligent mobility as a driver for economic growth and social
The full report can be downloaded at ts.catapult.org.uk/OpenData