The SLA Forum 2013, 18th Oct 2013, London

‘Update on Open Data and Mapping’

Venue: CBRE Henrietta House, 8 Henrietta Place, London W1G 0NB
Nearest tube: Bond Street
Date: Friday 18th October 2013
Time: 9.30 for 10.00; close at 4.30 pm

Don’t miss your chance to attend this year’s SLA Forum; we have five excellent speakers lined up to give you an in-depth update on open data and mapping for the site location and planning industry.

It’s free to attend.

To book your place please email

Download presentations

Download ‘GeoEnabling Retail and Property’ by Steven Eglinton, Director for EMEA at GeoEnable, from Slideshare by clicking on the image below:

Download MapInfo update, roadmap and social media by Jon Flitton and Tom Probert, Pitney Bowes Software.

Download Is authoritative data worth the price? by Robert Barr.

Download A Brave New World – the impact of Location analytics, Big data and multi-channel on the retail market by Graham Wallace, Senior Business Strategist, ESRI.

Download Smart Cities – Location, The Citizen and Systems by Andy Hudson-Smith, Director and Reader in Digital Urban Systems, CASA.

Agenda for The SLA Forum 2013

Speaker synopsis

Geo-Enabling Retail and Property

By Steven Eglinton, Director, The Association for Geographic Information (AGI) and Director for EMEA, GeoEnable.

In this presentation I will examine how Location Analytics, as a technology solution and a term, is very rapidly becoming a mainstream concept in IT and GIS.

With examples, what one thought of as specialised tools, such as GIS, are now being ‘democratised’ and embedded in easy-to-use business processes and workflows.

With examples of how this could benefit the property and retail sector, I will examine the main and most important trends in, ‘Geospatial’ and Location Analytics that affect anyone involved in spatial analysis or GIS. These trends really are ‘game changers’ compared with the last 35 years of GIS and Location Technologies and need to be understood to leverage the potential benefits.

  1. Cloud GIS – off-premise hosted mapping and location analytics tools. This can dramatically reduce costs and complexity of implementation.
  2. ‘Big Data’ – analysing and visualising vast quantities of near real-time data
  3. Location Analytics – the use of, what would have been called GIS technologies, embedded in systems for NON-specialist users.
  4. Dynamic (Real-time) Mapping
  5. Open Data – Open data from the UK and US for use in business context. This includes postcode data, which is now free to use
  6. Mobility – Real-time maps in people’s pockets! with the ability to edit and capture new data
  7. Embedding Location – Integration of Location in enterprise solutions – esp for Asset Management / ERP
  8. Location for all – Location Analytics is becoming part of peoples’ jobs as part of a workflow. Typically non-specialist users are now leveraging ‘GIS-like’ technologies without even knowing.

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A Brave New World – the impact of Location analytics, Big data and multi-channel on the retail market

By Graham Wallace, Senior Business Strategist, ESRI

The expansion of BI into BI + GIS = Location Analytics and look at some of the Gartner and analyst thoughts and recommendations about the future role of Location Analytics in the retail and Distribution sector.

Here I have in mind an assessment of how existing investment in BI systems can be enhanced by integrating these with GIS – and providing some examples of how this adds value in the Store / site selection process as well as improving data visualization and enhancing the capex management process. I will focus on opportunities to deliver sales and profit improvements with minimal investment

The potential impact of Cloud computing and Big Data

Here the main topics covered will be access to external data sources and trends in data access and data costs. This includes social media feeds and crowd- sourced data as well as an assessment of the quality of these feeds and whether they help or hinder the internal decision making process

What the rise of multi-channel retailing means in terms of capex management and data management

Here the main topic that retailers seem to be grappling with is how to create a standardized environment which integrates feeds from multiple channels and presents as single view of a customer as well as deciding how to allocate capital and investment resource to develop new routes to market. This is tied together by looking at the value of Location Analytics.

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Smart Cities – Location, The Citizen and Systems

Andrew Hudson-Smith, Director and Reader in Digital Urban Systems, Centre for Advanced Spatial Analysis
University College London

The talk looks at the rise of the Internet of Things and its implications for pulling together BIM, Geographical Information Systems and Augmented Reality as a move towards Smart Buildings and Smart Cities.

MapInfo Innovations

Tom Probert, EMEA Product Marketing Manager

  • MapInfo Professional update and road map
  • Resources for you! For example, Community Downloads, White papers, MI Pro journal, Tutorial videos, Ideas portal, etc.

Dr Jonathan Flitton, Senior Analytics & Data Consultant

Some aspects of Social Media data in Site location Analysis – can foursquare check-ins and Instagram locations help retailers?

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Is authoritative data worth the price? – the case of UK address data

By Dr Robert Barr, OBE

In the UK we have some of the most expensive address data in the world (possibly the best, but far from perfect) originally collected by the public sector. However recent changes have resulted in a number of poorly regulated for-profit entities preparing themselves to increase their profits from it. This is likely to lead to a reaction by the big data, web science and volunteered geographic information communities who will probably challenge these monopolies by identifying, collecting, quality assuring and exposing address data in the public domain if this comes to pass.

The questions for government are whether this continuing address war is in the public interest; does the protection of a poorly regulated for profit monopoly / duopoly serve UK plc best or should we follow an increasing number of countries in releasing a maintained national address base as open data?

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Speaker biographies

Graham Wallace, Senior Business Strategist, Esri UK Ltd.

Greg Wallace, Esri
Graham Wallace is Esri UK’s senior strategist with over 30 years Business Planning and Programme Management experience gained in the IT, financial services, telecom & retail sectors.

Working at Board level for a number of FTSE 100 companies much of this work has been focused on strategy, business transformation and M&A activity.

Graham read Geography at Cambridge University.

He is also Director of the AGI (Association for Geographical Information).

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Dr Andrew Hudson-Smith FRSA, Director and Reader in Digital Urban Systems, Centre for Advanced Spatial Analysis, University College London

Dr Andrew Hudson-Smith is Director and Deputy Chair of the Centre for Advanced Spatial Analysis (CASA) at The Bartlett, University College London. Andy is a Reader in Digital Urban Systems and Editor-in-Chief of Future Internet Journal, he is also an elected Fellow of the Royal Society of Arts, a member of the Greater London Authority Smart London Board and Course Founder of the MRes in Advanced Spatial Analysis and Visualisation at University College London. He is also course founder of the new 2014 course MSc in Smart Cities and Urban Analytics .

Twitter @digitalurban web

Dr Jon Flitton, Senior Analytics & Data Consultant, Pitney Bowes Software

Dr Jon Flitton, Pitney Bowes Software

Dr Jon Flitton is a Senior Analytics & Data Consultant within the UK Analytics team of Pitney Bowes Software. Having studied the spreading of Nuclear material for his PhD and then research into underwater mine detection and tank camouflage Jon joined a small boutique Retail Analytics company called NumberCraft (run by identical twins Simon and Peter Grindrod (OBE) and David Waters). Jon then joined GeoBusiness on the day it was bought by MapInfo which itself is now part of Pitney Bowes Software.

Jon spends his days solving client problems and playing with lots of data across Europe. These include Retail Sales models, product mix, market segmentation, optimal networks, Open Data, Social Media Data, bus route optimisation and optimally sized postcodes for postcode lotteries.

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Tom Probert, EMEA Product Marketing Manager for Pitney Bowes Software
Tom Probert, Pitney Bowes Software

Tom Probert is the EMEA Product Marketing Manager for Pitney Bowes Software.

He is an ex-pat American, and though with 12 years of experience living in the UK still sounds like a Yankee.

His responsibilities include presenting at MapInfo User events, meeting with customers to understand how we should improve our software and he is the editor for “The MapInfo Professional” monthly journal.

Dr Robert Barr, OBE
Dr Robert Barr, OBE
Bob Barr retired from the University of Manchester after a 30 year career of lecturing, research and consultancy on Geographical Information Systems. His laboratory was spun out as a company, Manchester Geomatics, of which he is now Chairman. He was a Harkness Fellow and studied the use of geographic information for the delivery of social services in the United States; he was also a member of the Cabinet Office Social Exclusion Unit’s policy action team which reported on “Better Information”.
He is a Visiting Professor at Liverpool University and Honorary Fellow at Manchester University. Bob is also a Borough Councillor and on Warrington Borough Council and an independent director of Helena Partnerships, the stock transfer Housing Association for St Helens.
He is currently an active campaigner for the release of Public Sector Information as Open Data and is a member of the Cabinet Office Open Data User Group and of the Ministry of Justice / The National Archives Advisory Panel on Public Sector Information. Bob was made an OBE, for “services to geography” in the 2008 New Year Honours list.

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Steven Eglinton BSc, MBCS, IoD
Council Member, Director, AGI (The UK’s Geospatial Industry Body)
Director, GeoEnable

Steven Eglinton

Steven is a thought leader in the innovative use of Geospatial Solutions, GIS and Location Analysis for Environmental Conservation, Asset Management, Construction and community empowerment. Having been the GIS Coordinator at Iracambi in 2004-2005, he remains involved with a strategic role providing advice to continually develop the mapping, surveying and GIS capabilities at Iracambi.

Following studies in Environmental Biology in the UK, Steven has worked his way from hands-on to strategic GIS roles, in the development, implementation and integration of geospatial and information-centric solutions. Including applying his skills to the UK government (7 years), London Underground, Asset Management and in the construction industry with King’s Cross.

He now understands that true ‘holistic’ solutions require more that ‘tech’ alone, but require innovative thinking; outcome-based management, end-user engagement, senior management backing and (crucially) strong leadership. With this in mind Steven is very active in shaping the Geospatial Industry as Founder and Director of geospatial and information management (IM) solutions company, GeoEnable, and as a Director and Council Member The UK’s Geospatial Membership Body – The AGI.

Steven’s Memberships and affiliations include:

  • Director/Council Member of the Association for Geographic Information (AGI) – The UK Geographic Information Industry Body
  • Chair, Membership Committee of the British Cartographic Society (BCS)
  • Chair or the AGI’s Asset Management / GIS special interest group
  • Member of the International Geospatial Society (IGS)
  • Member of BCS – Geospatial Specialist Group
  • Member of the Institute of Asset Management (AIM
  • Member of Esri UK DeveloperHub
  • International GIS Committee Coordinator, Iracambi Research Center

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To register for this free to attend event please email