Nick Smales, Tower Hamlets Council's "Service Head, 2012 Olympic & Paralympic Games Development & Renewal", invited me to a meeting with Jim Roberts, Tower Hamlets CIO, Chris Peacock, CIO of Hackney Council and Stephen Fellowes of London Connect to discuss Interconnect Strategy.
Nick, who comes from Hull and is therefore more than ordinarily familiar with its Telecommunications Network development that became Kingston Communications, is excited about the potential benefits of public sector intervention to develop a shared state-of-the-art network in East London, linked to 2012, and enabling lasting legacy advantage.
We discussed the Newham Telecommunications Convergence project, its relationship with the LPSN development and why we need this local initiative:- to target deprived communities not just those that are likely to prove most lucrative, to avoid a "lowest common denominator" approach, to ensure ownership and control of the asset so revenues from commercial development directly benefit the public sector.
I explained that, from the start, the NTC project had been conceived as one that would benefit the region, not just Newham. We agreed that we should continue to work together, and I will seek approval to:
- Share Newham's NTC Business case, subject to a Confidentiality Agreement.
- Set-up a Consultation Group, which could become a Steering Group if partners signed-up to common aspirations and goals for the NTC programme.
- Provide introductions to advisors that Newham ICT has worked with.
- Organise a Workshop to discuss East London's Interconnect Strategy.
In the afternoon I was a Panellist at an "Answer Time for Green IT" Conference organised by EILT (the "Environmental IT Leadership Team") at BMA House in Tavistock Square. Fellow Pannellists included the knowledgeable and passionate Catalina McGregor of the MOD (Chair of the CIO/CTO Green ICT Delivery Sub-Group), Matt Deacon, Microsoft's Chief Architectural Advisor, and representatives from BT, IBM, Cisco, Logicalis and Sun, with Gartner's Rakesh Kumar in the Chair.
It was interesting and informative to be involved in the debate, in which the audience was already converted to the cause, but there were different views about which approaches were most sustainable in the long-term. I learned about a lot of resources that I now plan to link to from Socitm's website.
Coincidentally, we heard today that Socitm's Chris Head has been appointed to the CIO/CTO Green Delivery Unit to represent the Local Public Sector. I mentioned this to Catalina, who was fulsome in her praise for him, so thanks, and well done Chris!
I'm developing a Glossary of the acroyms that are used in my Blog, which now runs to over 30 terms, and hope to save time by not spelling them all out in each entry. Do shout, 'though, if there's anything you dob't understand!