Mayor asks tech sector to help tackle London’s challenges

11 November 2019

The Mayor of London, Sadiq Khan, today launched the second round of his Civic Innovation Challenge, inviting the capital’s tech sector to offer solutions to some of the most pressing problems facing the city.


The Challenge brings together London’s public and private sector with tech companies, which will this year pitch solutions to three key issues: making the planning system accessible to help deliver more affordable housing, countering violent extremism online and tackling road congestion caused by freight deliveries.


There are 40 places available on the programme, of which up to three successful companies will be awarded £40,000 each to develop their solutions, with the others benefitting from a range of business and product development support.


The latest round of the Challenge will be delivered in partnership with Microsoft and the Social Tech Trust, a charity which uses technology to transform people’s lives. Sadiq launched the Challenge at the company’s flagship store on Regents Street in central London, where he also unveiled the revamped and expanded Tech.London website – an online service London’s tech sector can access business resources and tools, including this year’s Civic Innovation Challenge.


Last year, the Mayor laid down challenges in areas including active travel, dementia support, electric vehicle charging, increasing physical exercise and tackling loneliness. From 120 applications, seven companies were selected to receive grants of £15,000 to develop their ideas, with others also offered business development support.


London’s Chief Digital Officer, Theo Blackwell, said: “The Civic Innovation Challenge is a unique opportunity for tech companies to tackle some of the most pressing problems facing our capital. I would encourage London’s tech talent to put their creativity to the test and help solve these challenges.”



Notes to editors

-          Tech companies can pitch solutions for three challenges:

o   making the planning system accessible to help deliver more affordable housing (working with City Hall’s planning team)

o   countering violent extremism online (working with the Metropolitan Police Service)

o   tackling road congestion caused by freight deliveries (working with Transport for London)

-          Applications are now open on and companies should apply by December 12 2019.

-          Find out more at

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