The capital will soon have its own Chief Digital Officer to oversee digital transformation across government in London.
While, the city of London is an established financial capital. According to a report from London First, London’s economy boasted by £145 billion a year from digital technology, and has recently attracted more venture capital and created more companies valued at over $1 billion than any other European city. Therefore London also has the potential to be a tech capital.
London is already listed as one of the world’s smartest cities, with one of the most extensive underground wifi-networks, and home to Imperial College – the smart cities research center.
London merely needs a steer in the right direction to accelerate its growth. Therefore, a city such as this needs a Chief Digital Officer.
Just like any business, a city too can greatly benefit from a CDO. To fast-forward a shift towards a digital future, cities can have all their operations digitally, taxes can be redirected to where they are needed most – health care and transport, overheads can fall and as a result London can become a city of the future with greater opportunities and advantages.
Earlier this week, Mayor of London Sadiq Khan wrote in CityAM that he would be aiming to ensure that data and innovative tech solutions help deliver public services more easily and efficiently, and that a CDO would oversee these initiatives.
Khan, writing in City AM, said,
Over the next four years I will be constantly talking to businesses to ensure they get the support they need, but my initial priorities will include improving our connectivity – making it a priority to tackle London’s “notspots” – and making sure that data and innovative tech solutions can help deliver public services more easily and efficiently.
I also plan to appoint London’s first chief digital officer to oversee this effort and to encourage growth in the sector.
What will the CDO do?
The Chief Digital Officer of London will have three key roles, according to a new report by London First, Centre for London and Bloomberg Associates. One is to provide policy advice and digital expertise, another is to champion digital transformation across London government, and the last is to seek out and share best practice.
The CDO will be responsible for overseeing these changes, as well as ensuring that London’s rapid technological growth doesn’t suffer a slowdown. A good CDO for the city will encourage innovation, anticipate the impact of major disruptive technologies and be aware of any cyber-threats.
The CDO will report directly to the mayor, so will help guide Sadiq Khan’s decision making and ensuring a digital-first mentality.
In an attempt to keep London ahead of the global competition, the role of a Chief Digital Officer will be extremely important!