London Tech Week: Mission Critical Technologies

Mission Critical Technologies is a new addition to London Tech Week. Co-located within TechXLR8, the two day event set out with the intention of exploring the need to drive technology and innovation in public safety.

Exploring the emerging tech that will transform the way emergency services keep the public safe, the event was split into two parallel strands, looking at both Back-End and Front-End innovations. This balance worked well, enabling the event to cover all the major themes and technologies needed to generate a comprehensive discussion of the future of public safety.

The balance between industry and public sector was also very well struck. Not only in terms of the mix of delegates and speakers, but also in the exhibition stands. Demonstrations from established and emerging suppliers were complemented by stands from emergency services and Government showcasing some of their most ambitious tech initiatives. Perhaps most noticeable of these was the Home Office stand, which was showcasing some of the applications designed to run on the ESN.

techUK chaired the session on Front-End Innovation: Unmanned Vehicles and Automation. Hot on the heels of techUK’s own Drones Futures event the previous day, this session explored the scope of drones to augment public safety in mission critical situations and looked at some national and international case studies.

The case for drones to aid the emergency services is perhaps the easiest one to make of all the drones use cases out there. So the real issue is how UK emergency services can take drone use from small pockets of use by a few agencies, and deliver it into the mainstream, making drones business as usual for blue-lights services. Events such as MCT can help bridge that gap, allowing industry and end-users the chance to explore best practice and see the transformative potential of technologies like this.

In its first year MCT brought together a good range of public sector users and industry suppliers, and gave all involved an opportunity to immerse themselves in conversations about the technologies that will define how we keep people safe in the future. We’re looking forward to what next year’s event brings.

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