Make It Smart Hub to launch in the Highlands and Islands

CONSTRUCTION and manufacturing firms in the Highlands and Islands will soon be able to access a new online hub aimed at boosting innovation in the region.

The Make It Smart Hub, led by Construction Scotland Innovation Centre (CSIC) and Inverness College UHI, will launch during a webinar at 2pm on November 11. The event will allow virtual attendees to hear about opportunities in the region and how the new initiative can support their business.

Following the launch, companies can sign up to the Make It Smart Hub on its online portal – giving them access to learn, apply and share new technologies, processes and skill that seek to improve productivity and drive inclusive growth.

Andrew Nurse, innovation manager at CSIC, said, “The hub gives companies access to the latest innovation, helping them to work collaboratively to capitalise on local and national business opportunities. They will have the opportunity to explore innovation, to access free learning resources and advanced equipment and to be matched with solution providers to meet their challenges. By signing up to the hub on its website they can access everything the initiative has to offer and be kept up-to-date with new resources and rich programme of activity that is planned over the next few years.”

Georgina Parker, director of external relations at Inverness College UHI, added, “Inverness College UHI is delighted to be working in partnership with CSIC to share this important resource with SMEs in the Highlands and Islands, providing support for the sector as it looks to grow, develop and innovate during these challenges times. This platform will help make specialist equipment, technical expertise, training research and development support, more accessible to companies in this region.”

Steven Hutcheon, Highlands and Islands Enterprise’s acting regional head of technology and innovation, said, “Innovation is fundamental to business growth and diversification. It is also absolutely essential in Scotland’s economic recovery in manufacturing.  This project will help businesses in the area explore and deploy new technologies and processes speeding up adoption and increasing productivity.  We look forward to working with partners to realise the benefits across the region.”