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£1.2m gives HAT a HALL to help research how individuals can better use their own personal data

Irene NgEPSRC awards £1.2m funding to WMG, University of Warwick together with partner universities Cambridge, Surrey and UWE to create the HAT Living Labs.

The Engineering and Physical Science Research Council has awarded a grant of £1.2m to the University of Warwick, along with the universities of Cambridge, Surrey and West England to establish the “HAT Living Labs”.

The HAT is a platform technology that was created through an earlier Digital Economy Research grant to give individuals the technological power to claim, own, control and share their data the way they want to, to make better and more informed decisions. The management of the HAT ecosystem has recently been handed over to the HAT foundation for a global roll out (see press release here).

The HAT Living Lab (HALL) is a ‘sandbox’ within the HAT ecosystem with real users of HATs who have volunteered to be participate in an experimental environment where individuals and firms would exchange data and co-create innovations as well as test out business and economic models of data exchanges.

WMG Professor Irene Ng, who leads the project said:

“The HALL is all about Business Model Innovation within the HAT ecosystem. Innovation in business models is a challenge as its proof has to be in a live environment with real users and real transactions and cannot be tested within a traditional 'lab' or a research space setting in the same way a person cannot learn swimming in a library. A Living Lab approach ensures that experiments can occur within a live environment, but also that research is applied under controlled conditions to draw insights, create new knowledge and generate the innovations. The HALL will focus on HAT data exchanges within the retail industry through the HALL’s partners who are Tesco, Hollywood Elite Music, Sky, Hearst, and Methods.

Technology support with be provided by HATDEX, the operational arm of the HAT foundation and IBM.

The rationale behind HALL principles is to support the involvement of real users in real-life environments, where these users, together with researchers, developers, and companies work together in the development of new solutions, goods, services and business models. By using the business and innovation Living Lab principles, the HALL will support an open innovation process for all involved stakeholders, especially end users with their needs as a driving force for innovation.

The HALL is the latest in a series of cutting-edge research projects in the digital economy conducted by WMG’s Service Systems Group, which includes the RCUK-funded HAT and HARRIET projects. The HALL research team at WMG will comprise Professor Ng as its Principal Investigator, and Dr Ganna Pogrebna and Dr Xiao Ma as Co-Investigators. To find out more about the HALL project, please visit Those interested in getting their HATs can sign up here.

Those interested in getting their HATs can sign up here.

Mon 04 Apr 2016, 09:36 | Tags: Service Systems Irene Ng Research