Exploring new technologies to deliver better digital connectivity to stimulate economic growth, social inclusion and reduce carbon emissions
Scottish Government’s Digital Strategy for Scotland, “A Changing Nation: How Scotland Will Thrive In A Digital World” sets out the role digital and digital infrastructure will play in enabling Scotland to fulfill its potential, facing the challenges and opportunities digital brings and ensuring the societal and economic wellbeing of our people and our country.
Digital infrastructure is a key enabler in delivering preventative healthcare, diversifying methods of teaching, opening new markets to SMEs, and allowing more efficient farming methods.
Our Digital Connectivity team is workings with local and national stakeholders to understand the challenges and opportunities to improve digital connectivity with a view to developing activities that share best practices, innovate the current approach, will work in the market, and support wider national priorities.
Our work is focused on the following programmes of work:
Infralink is a programme that the Digital Connectivity team developed and leads on and is based upon the known tensions and challenges that exist between the public sector and the mobile industry.
It has developed best practice guidance that is sustainable and can be applied nationally to drive a wellbeing economy through better mobile connectivity.
The team uses its industry and technical knowledge to develop programmes the market will respond to and will have a clear impact on communities and future investment plans.
Helping local authorities improve their digital connectivity by better engagement with the mobile industry, the team has updated its Infralink-Exchange Playbook.
The Infralink-Exchange Playbook is a ‘how-to’ guide allowing public sector bodies to begin a project that improves mobile connectivity through commercial and GIS-based transformation. This best practice guide including case studies, templates and points to note, is a key output from the Scotland 5G Centre and DCMS investment in the Infralink programme.
The S4GI programme is addressing the digital divide by delivering up to 55 masts in remote locations in Scotland, thereby extending the digital infrastructure presence and giving mobile connectivity to those that did not have it before.
Working with Scottish Government and the delivery partner, WHP, the project team is overcoming geographical and technical issues to maximise investment into areas that previously has no mobile connectivity coverage and open up new ways of living and business opportunities for these benefiting communities. This leading sector programme is feeding its knowledge and experience into the deployment of the Shared Rural Network to help improve the digital equality in Scotland.
Advanced Wireless Infrastructure (spectrum-based wireless communications infrastructure) takes telecoms beyond the fixed and non-fixed dichotomy to look at how we use new spectrum, technology and even parts of the earth’s atmosphere to blur this divide to give new options for serving the needs of the user wherever they maybe.
Building on from the UK Government’s Wireless Infrastructure Strategy, SFT is supporting the Scottish Government by exploring and developing options for extending advanced wireless connectivity across Scotland that facilitates sustainable and inclusive outcomes and optimises existing investment/ committed funding.
Our Digital Connectivity team is working with Scottish Government, Scottish Enterprise and Scottish Development International to deliver the Green Data Centre Vision and Action Plan to attract green data centre and subsea connectivity investment into Scotland.
This work will allow data-driven technologies such as cloud-based computing, the Internet of Things and Artificial Intelligence to move data quickly and cost-effectively across and between nations.
In May 2023 we published our updated Site Selection Report 2023, aimed at providing the data centre market with a more in-depth look at where new data centres could be located across Scotland.
To request a copy of the Site Selection Report, please click here.
Sarah was a commercial lawyer for over 10 years before transitioning to digital infrastructure and applying her commercial skills to national broadband deployment.
Having also developed and led 4G and 5G mobile projects, she now leads the Digital Connectivity team with a focus on improving lives through better connectivity by leveraging the collective knowledge and the stakeholder network from across the country to develop approaches that are sustainable and are relevant to the needs of Scotland’s future.Contact Sarah
David is a real estate professional and former director of a UK-wide support services supplier to mobile industry. His career spans rollout of the very first mobile phone mast in Scotland to the latest 4G and 5G network sites. He brings that knowledge and experience to the Infralink programme which is taking a national approach to mobile connectivity.Contact David
Robert is a Chartered Engineer and was previously with the rail sector where he has been for 16 years.
With a wealth of development and innovation experience in the field of railway systems engineering, Robert leads on considering advanced wireless connectivity and trunk fibre provision in Scotland.Contact Robert