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Research is undertaken in a number of targeted themes:

A ‘Smart city’ is one that incorporates information and communication technologies (ICT) to enhance the quality and performance of urban services such as energy, transportation and utilities in order to reduce resource consumption, wastage and overall costs. The overarching aim of a smart city is to enhance the quality of living for its citizens through smart technology.

There are three lead cities (called Smart City ‘Lighthouses’), which include San Sebastian in Spain, Florence in Italy and Bristol in Great Britain. There are also a number of other ‘follower’ cities that will look into replicating interventions in their cities including Essen (Germany), Nilüfer (Turkey) and Lausanne (Switzerland). In addition to this, there are also a number of ‘observer’ cities, such as, Guangzhou (China) and Bogota (Colombia), as well as international networks who will take part in learning and dissemination of results. The project has a Consortium that consists of 38 partners.

The REPLICATE team is working to accelerate the deployment of innovative technologies, organisational and economic solutions to significantly increase resource and energy efficiency, improve the sustainability of urban transport, and drastically reduce greenhouse gas emissions in urban areas. Therefore, the project aims to enhance the transition process to a smart city in three areas:

Energy Efficiency

Saving energy consumption

  • Up to 56% in relation to existing situation in building retrofitting.
  • Up to 35% in District Heating.

Sustainable Mobility

Integrating sustainable Electric Vehicles (EV), recharging systems and Information Mobility System

  • More than 200 EV units.
  • 228 charging points.

Integrated ICT Infrastructures

Developing new sustainable and cost-effective services to citizens providing integrated infrastructures that improve efficiencies in the use of local public resources and the delivery of Public Services:

  • New ICT model based on FI-WARE and Open Data Management.
  • New intelligent lighting system based on new LED technology.
  • High speed mobile wireless network based on postWIMAX technology.

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IMPACT network

The Health and Care IMPACT Network is led by Professor Nav Mustafee and is a collaboration between health and care organisations and universities, primarily in the South West of England. The purpose of the network is to improve delivery of health and care through applied research, knowledge dissemination and decision support. The IMPACT Network was founded through a collaboration between Torbay and South Devon NHS Foundation Trust (Directorate of Strategy & Improvement) and the University of Exeter Business School.

The network aims to provide effective and trusted decision support to significant health and care organisations. Many exciting initiatives have come out of the network including forecasting the demand for Endoscopy services at Torbay hospital using demographic data, and the NHS Quicker App, which is helping to reduce A&E waiting times.

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NHS Quicker

The NHS Quicker project is led by Professor Nav Mustafee and is a free app, which helps NHS patients across Devon and Cornwall prioritise services based on wait and travel time. NHSquicker provides information about the healthcare services available to the user based on their location, helping them to choose the right service and spend less time waiting.

The app was designed by the Health & Care IMPACT Network, a collaboration between health and care organisations and universities, primarily in the South West of England. The Health and Care IMPACT Network were shortlisted for two prestigious awards, ‘Technological Innovation of the year’ at the THE Awards and ‘Enhancing Care by Sharing Data and Information’ at the HSJ Awards.

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VISTA-AR is led by Professor Andi Smart and funded by Interreg, the France (Channel) England programme.

The aim of the project is to make Augmented Reality (AR) and Virtual Reality (VR) available for a lesser cost to more heritage sites to help them increase the number of visitors by tailoring their digitalisation to their business models.

Exeter Cathedral is one heritage site that is benefiting from this project. This site is central to the City and has a host of cultural heritage assets which the public don’t get the chance to engage with. VISTA-AR is working alongside the Cathedral to explore how it can generate new experiences for visitors. Virtual reality helmets, tablet and smartphone devices, and immersive room experiences are being used to bring history to life, allowing visitors to meet characters from the past and providing access to inaccessible heritage artefacts.

In addition to working with Exeter Cathedral, they are working with the National Trust Tin Coast, the South West Coastal Path in the UK and the Lorient Submarine Museum and the Gardens of Valloires in France, where they are trying the bring the areas of natural beauty to life and show the public what it was like at the height of its industry.

The tools developed by the project will be made available to other UK and French cultural heritage sites on a cloud-based system where they can be easily accessed and adapted to the needs of each specific heritage location.

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