High-tech skills development could be enabled through supply chain and logistics

7 August 2020

The Newark Towns Fund Board has today released more information on its proposals to create a new ‘Smart Innovation, Supply Chain and Logistics Enterprise Zone’ in Newark to drive innovation and growth in the supply chain and logistics sector, creating opportunities in higher skilled and paid jobs.

The plans were included as part of Newark’s ‘Town Investment Plan,’ which was submitted to the Government last week in a bid to secure up to £25 million funding from the Towns Fund initiative.

Building on Newark’s large pool of existing players in the sector, the site would draw innovation and inspiration from the best examples of high-tech zones in Europe. The Zone would provide access to skills development and career pathways, through courses in digital innovation, smart business models, managing the digital supply chain, data analytics for smart manufacturing, logistics management, cybersecurity and new technologies. 

If Government funding is approved, the Zone would recognise Newark’s potential to connect and grow an integrated, industrial cluster of regional and national significance. The town’s location, including its lorry park, puts it in close proximity to major logistic companies, enabling businesses to quickly access their markets.

Tom Cartledge, Co-Chair of the Towns Fund Board and Chief Executive of Benoy, said: “This project would provide high-quality job opportunities for local people, allowing them to develop their knowledge and skills to train and re-train in smart innovation, supply chain management and logistics. 

“The Smart Innovation, Supply Chain and Logistics Enterprise Zone would be of regional, national and international significance. To drive the economic recovery following the recent pandemic, it would also enable digital capabilities to be realised, allowing remote work through extreme virtual connectivity.”

The Newark Towns Fund Board is working with the University of Lincoln and other partners to develop the plans. Andrew Stevenson, Director, Research & Enterprise at the University of Lincoln, said:

“Digital capabilities and the logistics of society will need to be re-engineered to deal with the challenges of hyper-globalised supply chains, new consumer habits and remote working. SiSCLog will unlock the unique potential of the Newark driving innovation and growth in the logistics sector. The University of Lincoln is delighted to be involved in this exciting development.”

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