ADD2328 Techmap and MedCity Map Server cost renewal

Type of decision: 
Assistant Director's decision
Code: 
ADD2328
Date signed: 
21 February 2019
Decision by: 
Nabeel Khan, Head of Economic Development

Executive summary

The Executive Director for Development, Enterprise & Environment approved (under cover of DD1357) expenditure of £62,000 for an online science and technology cluster map for London and a life sciences map for the South East Region (in 2016/17 and 2017/18), which were published online as techmap.london and medcitymap.com.

The annual server costs for the two maps are priced at £11,000, with two years at this rate included in the original £62,000. DD1357 stated that a subsequent decision be made in order to pay subsequent server costs.

This Decision seeks approval from the Assistant Director of Regeneration and Economic Development to pay the server costs of £11,000.

Decision

That the Assistant Director of Regeneration and Economic Development approves:

1. Expenditure of £11,000 to meet server costs for techmap.london and medcitymap.com for 2017/18 provision; and

2. The continuing application of the exemption (approved under cover of DD1357) from the requirement of the GLA’s Contracts and Funding Code to procure such services competitively.

Part 1: Non-confidential facts and advice

Introduction and background

Techmap.London and Medcitymap.com were launched in July 2015 and have since seen steady visitor growth.

Trampoline Systems were awarded a contract for the provision of the services in question, without competition, an exemption from the requirement of the GLA’s Contracts and Funding Code to procure such services competitively under cover of DD1357. The basis of the exemption was that Trampoline Systems were the exclusive owner of the intellectual property rights the use of which was necessary for the techmap to function. This remains the case.

In order to host the maps, the GLA is required to fund the server costs of £11,000 per year.

The expenditure sought relates to Trampoline Systems hosting of the map in 2017/18 and a separate approval regarding the current 2018/19 hosting is being sought under cover of a separate decision form.

Officers are speaking to, the LEAP, London & Partners and private sector organisations about the potential to update and reinvigorate the map. A separate decision document will be submitted in the instance of any material change.

Objectives and expected outcomes

The payment of server costs will enable the techmap.london and medcitymap.com to be hosted with up to date information on London’s technology and life sciences sectors, including employee numbers and turnover.

The tool helps stakeholders to understand where London’s business strengths lie, where clusters are emerging as well as to track the continued rapid growth of London’s science and technology sectors.

The impact of the website will be tracked through visitor numbers.

Officers are seeking external investment (via LEAP, London & Partners and external stakeholders) for the map to enable ongoing hosting and improved functionality.

Equality comments

Under Section 149 of the Equality Act 2010, as a public authority, the Mayor of London must have ‘due Regard’ of the need to eliminate unlawful discrimination, harassment and victimisation as well as to advance equality of opportunity and foster good relations between people who have a protected characteristic and those who do not.

Officers confirm there are no adverse implications under the public sector equality duty in relation to activities mentioned above. Both the tech and life sciences sector suffer from underrepresentation of women, BAME and disabled people. The GLA will encourage wide dissemination across relevant networks in order to enable use across all communities.

Other considerations

The key risk to the project is that the resource is underutilised. Officers are currently considering options for next steps. Officers will ensure that any renewal of the server fee is delivered hand in hand with a plan of how we can increase the number of visitors to the site, as well as seeking external investment to allow for greater usability. This will be part of a separate decision.

Financial comments

The annual cost of £11,000 for this initiative will be funded from the DEE Minor Programme budget for 2018-19. Going forward beyond 2018-19, the GLA are to seek external investment via LEAP, London & Partners and/or other external partners to continue the development work and hosting of the Map. This will, however, be subject to further approval via the GLA’s decision-making process.

Activity table

Activity

Timeline

Procurement of contract:        

Ongoing (tbc in forthcoming Decision)

Delivery Start Date

Ongoing

Delivery End Date:

TBC in forthcoming decision