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Project Keeps Supply Chain Data Safe

Team Seeks Low-Carbon Supply Chain

24 March 2016

Costain has won £120,000 funding from Innovate UK, the Government’s innovation agency, to help develop software that can keep construction supply chain data secure.

Costain will work with analytics solutions provider Concentra and cyber security experts at the University of Warwick on the project, which has a total funding of £750,000. The aim is to create software that can securely analyse construction material, equipment and labour supply chains to provide greater visibility and identify areas for improvement in material flows, demand and supply of resources and utilisations over time. The aim is to help the construction industry meet the Government’s target of reducing costs by 33% (£45 billion) by 2025.

According to Andy Birtwistle, Supply Chain Director at Concentra, there are currently fundamental weaknesses in some supply chains. “A supply chain can be fragmented, transactional and driven by procurement tendering that reduces prices but not necessarily costs. This is a fantastic opportunity to create a new construction model for the UK that promotes an efficient and collaborative supply base.”

Costain’s role in the project will be to trial the new software at its highway sites. Said Mohammed Shah, Costain Highways Sector’s Lead for Research and Development: “The highways sector is one that uses a great deal of data. And if that data is not secure, it could result in the loss of both customer trust and long term business.

“We want the project to come up with a software system that will allow us to deliver Highways without having to worry about data risk, knowing that all our client and subcontractor details are secure. This in turn will help build further trust between the different parties.”

Added Simon Hart, Innovation Programme Leader – Built Environment at Innovate UK: “As construction and infrastructure move to more digitally enabled processes, data security is a key area for innovation and growth. Digital construction is an area where the UK leads the world and pioneering projects like this are key to driving jobs and exports for British businesses. Innovate UK is proud to support this project which aims to bring new expertise from outside of the sector. “



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