5G Campus: A Digital District in the Heart of the City

The University’s plan to become a 5G campus as part of its £1bn campus development programme will be outlined later this week at the Digital Cities 2017 event.

FutureScot, in association with The Sunday Times Scotland, is hosting a series of regional events reflecting the unique successes, challenges and opportunities of digital technology within each of Scotland’s city regions.

The University’s representatives Professor Muhammad Imran, Professor of Communications Systems in the School of Engineering, and Michael Burns, Business Development Manager at the Research, Strategy and Innovation Office, and, will share a platform with CGI Group, the fifth largest independent information technology and business process services firm in the world.

Professor Imran said ahead of the event: “5th Generation (or 5G) is the next level communications technology under global development. Over the coming years it will develop to support super-fast, ultra-reliable, ubiquitous communications across large numbers and types of devices, connecting people and machines in a way often referred to as the ‘Internet of Things’ and the ‘Internet of Skills’. However, 5G is still in its early developmental stage and has yet to adopt common standards.”

He added: “Universities, industry and government are investing heavily in this new technology as an essential backbone for the digital services of the future. The University of Glasgow is keen to contribute to this development through a programme of partnership research, based around the development of the smart campus.”

Professor Chris Pearce, Dean of Research for the College of Science and Engineering, who leads the Smart Campus programme said: “Capturing the transformative effect that the new campus will have on this part of the city, the University wants to  work with researchers, students, businesses, museums, residents and visitors to test a number of 5G-based services with the potential to improve and strengthen the digital infrastructure of the western part of the city of Glasgow.

 “These services will deliberately reach beyond the University's boundary to reflect the shared interests and requirements of the wider population and will include healthcare, student experience, transport, tourism, energy, 3D mapping and environment as well as communications.

“The work programme we hope to undertake will push academic research into a real-time 'test-bed'  in and around the West End of the city, developing the concept of a 5G park where researchers and industry from around the UK and beyond can gather to design, develop, deploy and demonstrate a range of emerging 5G technologies. This will transform the Smart Campus into a living lab.”

Whilst the University of Glasgow will take a lead role in this, it will also encourage involvement from other Scottish universities, the Scottish and UK Governments and  UK 5G Innovation Centres to ensure the strongest impact of the technologies and services developed.

Led by Professor Imran and Professor Pearce from the College of Science and Engineering, the programme is expected to develop around a broad partnership of academia, technology, public policy and industry to help deliver the next generation of digital services.

The FutureScot Digital Cities Seminar Series will visit Glasgow on Thursday 14 September, and a readout from each seminar will be published in The Sunday Times Scotland on 17 September,  followed by an independent supplement to be distributed with The Sunday Times Scotland on 24 September.


First published: 11 September 2017

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