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An Analytical Approach

Exeter will be an engaged data-aware and entrepreneurial city which has the skills to analyse and address the challenges that it faces.

Exeter City Futures plans to increase the capability of Exeter by transforming it into an Analytical City – giving citizens the power to control their environment in positive ways, and entrepreneurs the tools they need to develop long-term solutions that will solve our urbanisation challenges.

Currently many citizens and entrepreneurs already have the ability to make a difference in the city, they have the drive and the capacity to learn but may not have the analytical skills or access to data and tools needed to increase their capability for making change. Data analytics can identify patterns in traffic, the long-term effects new infrastructure will have, and tell us where people are really going and with what frequency. More accurate data surrounding energy use can inform us of exactly where efficiency needs to be increased and what the biggest wins will be.

By using data to understand and solve these major problems of urbanisation, we can stimulate innovation in the City, build a stable foundation on which the economy can thrive, and deliver a wide range of benefits that are sustainable environmentally and financially.


Imagining the Future of Exeter

Through our engagement activities with the diverse business and local communities of Exeter and by analysing best practices of other cities across the globe we have identified a set of features that Exeter will need to demonstrate in order to meet this Goal.


  • Exeter has a detailed understanding of the status of current public transport within the City and from rural communities
  • Exeter has an understanding of walking patterns across the City to support the targeted development of walking infrastructure
  • Exeter has real-time digital platform that integrates multiple sources of city data to support speed and agility of City decision-making 
  • Every business in Exeter can access Ultrafast broadband supporting productivity and digital innovation
  • All public services make use of the city-wide digital platform which enables better sharing of information between organisations and quicker service improvements resulting in better outcomes for citizens
  • Exeter citizens and organisations have access to accurate and real time data on the City performance (traffic, energy usage, air quality etc) to inform their activities
  • All Exeter businesses with 500+ employees have committed to delivery of the Exeter Goals and are publishing/sharing data on the Exeter Data Mill to support the measurement of progress
  • Citizens have control over their personal data and access to ‘data trusts’ enabling them to share their data and support the development of improved city services
  • Data on all sources of energy generation will be shareable so consumers are better informed about the source of their energy use 
  • Smart bins are common place and accurately track the amount of food waste collected from domestic and commercial premises
  • Domestic energy consumption data is shared openly with local authorities, as reported by connected applications
  • Ultrafast broadband is installed in all public buildings (including schools) to improve services to communities
  • The city has a clear strategy for the development of skills needed for the future of work in the region to ensure that local opportunities are accessible
  • Exeter is offering data and analytics skills training for students and adults 
  • A city-centre hub has been opened to provide a place for businesses, innovators and social enterprises to collaborate on city goals. 
  • Exeter has a thriving ecosystem of start-ups and social enterprises, supported by active investor network, and is recognised as a leading City for entrepreneurs addressing urban challenges 
  • All communities in Exeter have access to learning and skills programmes that support them to build sustainable local enterprises and make change