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Unlocking Innovation events go virtual with Digital Journeys for Passengers and Rail Freight webinars

The Railway Industry Association (RIA) has announced today that the next in its series of highly-popular Unlocking Innovation events will go virtual, with webinar sessions held each day during the week commencing 20 April.

The event, themed Digital Journeys for Passengers and Rail Freight, due to take place in Leeds during the Leeds Digital Festival, will now take place online in the following daily webinars (each one from 2-3pm):

  • Monday 20 April: Working in rail for the first time, with Network Rail looking at how companies can enter and work in the rail industry;
  • Tuesday 21 April: Better journeys for Passengers, with Birmingham University looking at how data can improve the passenger experience;
  • Wednesday 22 April: Better use of rail freight, looking at how data can improve logistics in rail;
  • Thursday 23 April: Implementing Mobility as a Service (MaaS), with Connected Places Catapult looking at how we engage Rail as MaaS develops; and
  • Friday 24 April: A better transport system in Leeds, with West Yorkshire Combined Authority looking at how the city can build more connected local travel;

David Clarke, Technical Director of the Railway Industry Association (RIA), said: “During this difficult time, the rail industry is having to change how it delivers so we can work together to tackle the spread of Coronavirus. At RIA, we’re also changing how we deliver our services, moving our well-regarded Unlocking Innovation event to webinars.


“This normally day-long event will now be split into five one hour sessions, exploring how we can deliver digital journeys for passengers and the freight sector. Each webinar will be packed full of content looking at the key  challenges to delivering digitalisation, held through the week of Leeds Digital Festival. We hope you can join us for what are set to be five fascinating sessions.”

The webinars will explore the major challenges facing the rail sector, highlight the advice and funding available to help suppliers collaborate with the rail sector on innovation, and provide SMEs with an opportunity to pitch to major rail industry players. The webinars are organised in partnership with Network Rail and the UK Rail Research and Innovation Network (UKRRIN).

All the webinars are free and open to any business or startup that wants to look at rail as a market. Journalists are welcome to attend and report on the webinars.

Register for all events (selecting the webinar via the top dropdown menu) here 

RIA’s highly regarded Unlocking Innovation events bring together the people with ideas and ambition to drive change within the rail industry. The events create a platform for large and small companies, academics and innovators with the aim of developing productivities that will drive invention in the industry. Unlocking Innovation events also aim to create new supply chains, to build value and benefit the UK economy, rail suppliers and ultimately the customers, the rail users.

The Leeds Digital Festival this year marks its fifth anniversary and is a multi-venue, city-wide festival celebrating digital culture in all its forms. From April 20 to May 1 2020, the UK’s largest tech event will host 12 jam-packed days discussing all things digital. Whether you’re interested in Fintech, coding, information security, AI, Medtech, data, startups, digital music, cybersecurity or AR/VR, the festival has got something for you. This year, due to the Coronavirus crisis, the festival has now moved to become and exclusively digital event. You can find more information about the festival here:

Photo credit: RIA

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