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Empowering consumers with applications & services from the midata Innovation Lab

Posted on: Friday 9th of August 2013

The midata Innovation Lab (mIL) is the world’s fastest-built data innovation lab, bringing together the most interesting and varied datasets (integrated around individuals) for brands, developers and consumer bodies to innovate with. The mIL is made up of nine ‘learning and doing strands’. Each strand, led by one of the founding partners, explores and builds learnings in the various consumer, business and wider social aspects that we think will form part of the emerging ecosystem.

Ctrl-Shift is leading on the Innovative Apps & Services strand. The aim of the strand is to generate ideas, concepts and prototype services using data donated to the mIL. The strand members will develop a suite of evidence that illustrates the benefits of digitally empowered consumers, and produce innovative apps and services that demonstrate these benefits.

The strand will explore opportunities collaboratively, with multiple participating organisations, and enable the individual participating organisations to use the mIL to develop services specific to their consumers’ needs. Ctrl-Shift will be working on the strand with:

  • Aimia (UK brand Nectar)
  • Aviva
  • Consumer Futures
  • Grapple
  • nPower
  • Ofgem
  • ODI
  • Telefonica
  • Which?

Collaborative Innovation Club

This week Ctrl-Shift brought together the strand members for the Collaborative Innovation Club kick-off session. The purpose of the workshop was to create concepts built on the integrated data sets of personal information in the mIL. The starting point was ‘what makes life hard’ for people. Using these ideas we discussed app and service concepts that can be tested with consumers, and then developed into wireframes, and for the best into prototypes.

The Club will run the entire process of innovation three times through to the end of October this being the 1st where we’ve focused on a handful of concepts to progress:

  • Healthy Family – how to buy the most healthy food for your family for less
  • MyDigitalMe – taking the hassle out of my online commerce
  • Intentcasting – helping me make better decisions
  • People Really Like Me – making better decisions based on what people really like you do
  • Life Events – Managing life events enabled by my data
  • DataPreferences – a dashboard for my data.

Where are the business benefits I hear you ask, and rightly so. Well we spent some time drafting a set of principles for app and service development in the mIL a part of which is the value to the consumer but also value to business and organisations. We’ll be developing business models and business cases for the most extraordinary concepts, those that test best with consumers, as the innovation process progresses.

The Collaborative Innovation links into other parts of the mIL, as we test concepts with consumers those learnings will be gathered via the Consumer and Business Analysis strand, as we develop concepts that can be developed we will work closely with the Developer Club strand. And as we identify the need for data sets we’ll be working with the ODI to pull in Open Data and of course with the Consumer Data and Recruitment strand to bring the data sets into the mIL to support app development.

Lots of work ahead but much progress made. A good days work by all.

Last week we spoke to Dan Bates, Director of the mIL about the next phase for the mIL and how consumers and developers can get involved. For more information about the midata Innovation Lab see the website or follow @midataBIS on twitter.