It’s been a busy week again, three conferences covering different aspects of Geospatial Insight’s interlinked world.

First up, our home turf, the Space Applications Network Event. This featured a compelling keynote from Sky at Night presenter Maggie Ederin Pocock who chivvied the audience to tell the world about how great space science is and how good the UK is at it. Geospatial Insight demonstrated and presented Breathe Clean, an online and mobile health application which processes data from satellite and other sources to facilitate the viewing of real-time air pollution levels and to help optimise routes for car, cycle and pedestrian journeys. We were pleased to hold several discussions with attendees about taking and extending the concepts of Breathe Clean into health authorities, government and other health organisations to help make our towns, cities, homes and work places happier, healthier places.

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Two days later, something a little different, the Spatial Finance Initiative driven by the University of Oxford Smith School of Enterprise supported by a consortium including the Satellite Applications Catapult and the Alan Turing Institute. This well-attended launch event, to 250+ attendees, introduced the notion that Earth observation and remote sensing combined with machine learning has the potential to transform the availability of information in our financial system and change how risks, opportunities, and impacts are measured and managed by financial institutions. ‘Spatial finance’, where geospatial data is integrated into financial theory and practice, creates a significant opportunity for the financial services industry. It is particularly helpful when analysing risks and impacts related to climate change and the environment, and thus driving “sustainable finance” which according to one panelist will help make the financial services industry more “purposeful” than it has been in some considerable time. Not all in the audience were convinced based on some lunchtime mumbles, but these are early days, with regulators and Government appearing determined to make things happen.

These are exciting times, when the space industry can come together with the financial services industry to build and evolve purposeful, sustainable and spatial finance and I am proud that Geospatial Insight can take part in that journey. #GeoFinance

And finally, the FinTech Influencer’s “What’s New for FinTech in 2019”, featuring an able panel moderated by the superb Mike O’Hara of The Realization Group including representatives of Man Group, hosts Simmons & Simmons, KPMG and FinTech Award Winner Envestnet. Topics such as Blockchain, AI [Artificial Intelligence], RPA [Robotic Process Automation], ICOs [Initial Coin Offerings] were boosted and then knocked down by the opinionated panel and engaged audience. All’s well that ends well, because the event celebrated the FinTech Influencers and Harrington Starr’s “The Most Influential FinTech Companies of 2019”. I am proud to say that Geospatial Insight made the list, albeit with a spelling mistake! Check out the list here

About the Author: Steve Wilcockson

At Geospatial Insight, Steve is Product Manager for RetailWatch, a consumer sentiment analysis dataset and drives client-facing activities in the financial services segment for all Geospatial Insight products. Steve was formerly Global Industry Manager for Financial Services at the engineering software company MathWorks, developers of MATLAB™, where Steve worked in the field for over 20 years among model builders and implementers such as quants, quant developers, economists, actuaries, algo traders, portfolio managers and risk managers. Steve has a masters degree in Geography from the University of Cambridge and the University of British Columbia

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