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Nesta is an innovation foundation. For us, innovation means turning bold ideas into reality and changing lives for the better. We use our expertise, skills and funding in areas where there are big challenges facing society.

Five projects announced for Y Lab’s Digital Innovation Accelerator

Today we announced the projects selected to take part in Y Lab’s Digital Innovation Accelerator.

This Accelerator is a chance to explore how digital technologies can be used to improve, reframe and transform public services in Wales. We have selected the following five projects to receive funding and a programme of support over the next few months: 

  • Digital tenancies in Melin Homes: This team is interested in how you can offer  tenancy services through digital tools and service design, and will be testing options for low-cost digital access for tenants with no current experience of digital services.
  • Geospatial mapping to help prevent grass fires: A Welsh Government  project, developing predictive mapping tools to support emergency services to prevent deliberate grass fires.
  • Sensor technology for smart flood prevention: Cardiff Council will trial sensor technologies across the city’s water drainage system to enable strategic planning with the aim of reducing flood risks.
  • Technology-enabled learning in Neath Port Talbot Colleges (NPTC) Group: This  team will develop educational resources that use technology and offer new ways for further education students to learn.
  • Collaborative arts and culture data sharing: Arts Council of Wales and National Museum Wales will work in partnership to develop and pilot new data analytic systems that provide new insights into the cultural sector and enhance customer communications. 

We’ll be offering our projects support along the way, in the form of workshops and development sessions. Alongside this, we’re working closely with our partner Cardiff University to connect the university’s world-leading researchers to the projects.

The first workshop takes place this week and will focus on defining the problems behind the projects. We’ll be asking the teams what they really want to solve and getting them to challenge the assumptions that they might be making. There will also be sessions to help teams generate ideas, develop their prototyping and testing skills, and help them better understand the impact their project could have across Wales. 

We’re glad to be taking the rest of our Digital Innovators’ Network forward on this journey too. Our brilliant Network members will be able to offer alternative points of view, expertise from other sectors and to make connections that will create new opportunities.

The Network programme, created as part of the Digital Innovation Fund for Wales, has provided great opportunities for us to ask questions and make connections across public services in Wales. With the launch of the Accelerator we move forward into the next exciting phase of the Fund. 

Each of our projects will be blogging throughout their experience and you’ll be able to follow their progress over the course of the next few months. 


Jess Hoare

Jess Hoare

Jess Hoare

Programme Manager, Y Lab

Jess was a Programme Manager for Y Lab, Nesta’s social innovation lab for Wales. One of her core responsibilities was the Digital Innovation Fund for Wales.

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