SMALL VOICES ASK FOR BIG CHANGES...
IMPROVING THE INNOVATION FUNDING ECOSYSTEM
Innovation is all about considering new ideas & ways of working, at the Rail Innovation Group we strive to make sure that our work streams reflect this. Our members are micro, start up & SME businesses, who enter the rail supply chain - or try to enter it - by bringing approaches & products to market through the support provided by various (mostly public) funding streams.
This snapshot report is the result of conversations we’ve had with our members, its purpose is to start a discussion between industry & government/funders.
The Rail Innovation Group set out to consider some of these issues, speaking to a cohort of our community to explore:
Why small businesses have not found the ‘funding ecosystem’ easy to navigate?
Why funding doesn’t necessarily result in new products & processes being brought into the market as expected?
THE RAIL INNOVATION GROUP IS A NON-PROFIT COMMUNITY HELPING TO CHANGE CULTURES & BRING DIGITAL TECH INTO RAIL. THE GROUP HAS 3 ROLES:
01 / THE NETWORK
02 / THE CULTURE
03 / THE OUTREACH
OUR MEET UPS PROVIDE A NEUTRAL SPACE FOR TECH & RAIL PROFESSIONALS TO MEET, SHARE KNOWLEDGE, DISCUSS INDUSTRY CHALLENGES, & BUILD TRUST.
OUR RECOGNISED INNOVATION SCHEME IS AWARDED TO PEOPLE INSPIRING CULTURE CHANGE WITHIN RAIL & SMALL COMPANIES WHO'VE DEVELOPED INNOVATIVE NEW SOLUTIONS.
START UP RAIL IS OUR PROGRAMME TO FIND + PROMOTE A NEW GENERATION OF DIVERSE SUPPLIERS BRING NEW IDEAS & CREATIVITY TO THE SUPPLY CHAIN.
EVERY MONTH THE COMMUNITY GETS TOGETHER TO SHARE KNOWLEDGE, EXPERIENCE & INDUSTRY CHALLENGES. WE VISIT TECH & CREATIVE COMPANIES TO HEAR FROM LEADERS IN INNOVATION WHO SHARE THEIR INSIGHT OF SUCCESSFUL TECH ADOPTION & THE COMPANY CULTURES THAT ENABLE IT.
- WHAT TOPICS HAVE WE DISCUSSED?
- WHERE WILL WE BE NEXT TIME?
- WOULD YOU LIKE TO HOST A MEET UP?
- DO YOU HAVE AN INSIGHT YOU'D LIKE TO SHARE?
START UP RAIL
START UP RAIL IS OUR INITIATIVE TO SEEK OUT NEW TECH COMPANIES & PROVIDE INSIGHT & ADVICE ON ROUTES INTO RAIL'S SUPPLY CHAIN. AS THE SCHEME IS TARGETED AT FINDING RAIL'S NEXT GENERATION OF SUPPLIERS, WE HAVE TO LOOK IN THE MOST DIVERSE PLACES.
SUCCESS IN THE START UP RAIL SCHEME WILL SEE THE CREATION OF A SELF-SUSTAINING FLOW OF NEW STRART UP TALENT ENTERING INTO THE RAIL SECTOR, INSPIRED BY THE SUCCESS OF THEIR PEERS.
RECOGNISED INNOVATION SCHEME
OUR ENGAGEMENT ACROSS THE RAIL SECTOR HAS SHOWN THERE IS A DESIRE TO RECOGNISE THOSE PEOPLE ENSURING THAT NEW, DIVERSE IDEAS ARE ADOPTED WITHIN THE CULTURE OF THE INDUSTRY. THE RECOGNISED INNOVATION SCHEME ENDORSES SUPPLIERS & PEOPLE WHO HAVE CONTRIBUTED TO:
- PROMOTING A MODERN, EFFICIENT RAIL SYSTEM.
- CREATING A SEAMLESS JOURNEY EXPERIENCE.
- THE ADOPTION OF A CUSTOMER-CENTRIC APPROACH.
ONE BIG CIRCLE
Being part of The Rail Innovation Group has helped accelerate our work within the rail industry and we are delighted to be part of such a dynamic and exciting group"
CEO & CO-FOUNDER
The Rail Innovation Group offers a fun, friendly network of like-minded companies & professionals. Since joining as a Founding Member it’s been amazing for our company, supporting us to expand & find new opportunities within & outside the railway.
PARCELS AS PASSENGERS
AN EXPLORATION OF THE RAIL NETWORK'S ROLE IN THE SUSTAINABLE DELIVERY OF PARCELS.
Ahead of COP 26, we've launched our exploration into the potential for expanding the use of the existing rail network to facilitate the faster & more sustainable delivery of smaller & medium sized parcels.
Passenger trains must be part of the move to sustainable parcel delivery
The move could support passenger train revenues
Parcels arriving into stations close to where people live & work - meaning that cargo bikes can be used for the last mile
We must all work better together to decarbonise
The Rail Innovation Group believes that there is the opportunity for rail to provide long distance routes, which are much faster than the road network, which could then be complimented with the use of e-cargo bikes at each end point for the last mile/ first mile delivery & pick up/ returns in towns & cities. This is already being done in some areas of the country, but there is potential to expand this approach across the wider rail sector.