In a press
release, GeoWorks, an industry centre
to promote geospatial innovation and competencies, was officially launched on
16 July 2018 by Senior Minister of State for Law and Health, Mr Edwin Tong. GeoWorks aims to connect
businesses, entrepreneurs, and innovators
to drive geospatial solutions for the promotion of business growth and
opportunities in Singapore.
Geospatial information and technology has the potential to transform policy analysis,
operations, and service delivery,
accelerate the growth of industries and generate economic and social value for
Singapore. Geospatial information and technology helps support numerous
applications across different sectors and allows for real-time location-based
services. For instance, geospatial information from Global Navigation Satellite
Systems (GNSS) is used in autonomous vehicle trials and development, drone
flight path planning and even in remote sensing applications for day-to-day
navigation and wayfinding.
“In the age of technological disruption,
GeoWorks represents the Government’s commitment to enhance the use of geospatial information and technology to support
digitalisation of our key industries, and
to build up geospatial capabilities in support of Singapore’s Smart Nation
Initiative”, said Mr Tong.
GeoWorks was set up by the Singapore Land Authority
(SLA) in January 2018 as an initiative under the Singapore Geospatial Master
Plan. SLA and the Government Technology Agency of Singapore (GovTech) have
jointly developed the Geospatial Master Plan which sets out the vision,
strategies and key initiatives to facilitate geospatial transformation and to
pave the way towards a “Geospatial-Powered Singapore’. The aim of the
Geospatial Master Plan is to leverage emerging technologies and to build
geospatial competencies to address complex challenges and create opportunities.
This is in line with the Digital Government Blueprint’s strategy to raise
Whole-of-Government’s digital capabilities to pursue innovation, in support of
Singapore’s Smart Nation drive.
“Geospatial information has the tremendous
potential to transform services, streamline business processes and help
companies gain competitive advantage with geospatial data analytics,” SLA Chief
Executive, Tan Boon Khai said.
As an industry
centre, GeoWorks will galvanise the geospatial industry by reaching
out to geospatial businesses, entrepreneurs and users, supporting them with
resources such as geospatial and government data, expertise and access to
networks and opportunities. The ultimate objective is to facilitate the growth
of a vibrant geospatial ecosystem, creating value through shared knowledge,
expertise, and government data. The
geospatial companies catalyse geospatial
innovation and solutions; while the corporate and government end-users provide
access to business opportunities. GeoWorks now hosts 22 GeoTech companies
including ABJD, AirMap, NavInfo Data Tech and LDR Technology.
ABJD cofounder and Chief Engineer Hazrul A
Jamari said, “We are grateful to be a part of the Geoworks community as we are
able to tap on the expertise and resources of the OneMap team to build our next
generation Delivery Management System (DMS) and Halalonclick app. With OneMap,
we are able to get authoritative and updated addresses so that we deliver
Ben Marcus, cofounder,
and Chairman of AirMap said that AirMap
will be partnering SLA to progress geospatial innovation in Singapore. "In
our experiences around the world, we’ve found that collaboration with
government and local stakeholders is key to achieving the full promise of
drones and drone technology," he added.
Seventeen GeoPartners have also come
onboard to support GeoWorks, including Amazon Web Services, Autodesk, and Esri. “Spatial digitalisation is essential to many industries as it underpins all
efforts geared towards Singapore becoming a Smart Nation,” Thomas Pramotedham,
CEO of Esri Singapore said.
To build up and sustain a geospatial
ecosystem, regular challenges will be conducted at GeoWorks to encourage the
ideation and development of innovative solutions to address challenge
statements from user sectors, such as logistics, transport, and retail.
“Through GeoWorks, SLA will curate programmes
and initiatives, including mentorships and linkages with key industry
stakeholders, to seed business opportunities for geospatial start-ups, and
jumpstart innovation in this pioneering field. Ultimately, we are looking into
developing and uplifting skillsets and capabilities towards harnessing the
potential of emerging technologies to address complex challenges and
opportunities,” Mr Tan added.