09 Jul 2019

National recognition for Leeds’ work to become a digital city

Leeds City Council has scooped digital council of the year at the 2019 Digital Leaders 100 awards for its work to improve digital tools, technology and inclusion in the city.

The annual awards celebrate the teams and individuals who are working hard behind the scenes to secure the UK’s digital transformation. The council also received a nomination for Digital Collaboration of the Year for the 100% Digital Leeds programme and the work with the Good Things Foundation which focuses on a major digital inclusion scheme across the city.

There are a number of programmes ongoing across the city that are using digital tools and technology to improve the outcomes for everyone. For example, Techmums clubs are helping women into employment and the council’s Careview app is helping to identify residents in need of support. Alongside this there is a growing digital inclusion network of third sector organisations helping people with everything from learning new skills, applying for work or benefits and reducing isolation by connecting them to friends, family and the wider community.

People and projects from across the council and partner organisations within the city have made the shortlist for a number of national awards in recent months and as a result of this ground breaking work, Leeds has been chosen to host two prestigious national conferences recently with GDS Sprint: Leeds, the government’s digital service showcase for digital transformation in 2019 and the main civil service policy conference -the Four Nations Policy Conference.

Councillor James Lewis, deputy leader of Leeds City Council said:

“I’m delighted to see that we are gaining national recognition for the work we are doing to achieve our ambition for Leeds as a digital city.

“Using a collaborative approach Leeds is leading the way and setting the standard in digital leadership, innovation and inclusion that other councils and other cities are following. This is especially true in our approach to health and wellbeing where we are seeing improved outcomes. We are using technology to support adults with learning difficulties and disabilities to be more independent, to help people with dementia find more meaningful activities and to help people with long-term conditions to manage their health more effectively.

“In Leeds, we are focused on putting people at the heart of our growth and this is reflected in our ambition to be a digital city where everyone can benefit from the advantages of a digital society and reach their full potential.”

Notes to editors

Staff and projects that have been recognised in 2019;

Leeds was also represented at the Digital Leader 100 awards for the following;

  • Smart City of the Year

    Our work on Smart Leeds focuses on our three foundations for a smart city: Connectivity, Digital inclusion, Open data and analytics. These enable us to deliver our commitments in three priority areas: Housing, Health & wellbeing, Travel & transport – with a fourth commitment on the Environment to be introduced soon, linking to the council’s Climate Emergency declaration.


  • Digital Leader of the Year

    Vanessa Atkinson, Digital Transformation Manager at Leeds Teaching Hospital Trust was recognised in this category for her work on Leeds Digital Way. Using innovative technology, information and insight to enable everyone to safe and integrated patient centred care in Leeds and beyond.

Dylan Roberts, the Council’s Chief Information Officer, has been placed in the top ten for the third year running for the CIO 100. The 2019 CIO 100 recognises the most transformative and disruptive CIOs in the UK. The CIO 100 celebrates technology and business leaders driving change in successful organisations, and is a showcase of the achievements of 100 executives tackling transformation in their markets.

100% Digital Leeds (https://digitalinclusionleeds.com/) The biggest tablet lending scheme in the country, a grants programme to build capacity and sustainability, a digital inclusion team to train staff and volunteers. Over 80 third sector organisations have joined our digital inclusion movement, helping people to get online through tablet lending and support. E.g. St George’s Crypt supporting homeless people to get online to carry out universal credit applications, connect with people and get on the housing list.

Careview (https://leeds.care.vu/) is a simple app, deployed across the whole of Leeds, which allows approved professionals (such as council workers, post office and charity workers), to log concerns about houses which may be indicative of a resident in need, such as an untidy garden or post piling up. When a Careview user flags properties, they appear as patches of colour which build up to a heat map. The higher the intensity of the colour on the heat map, the more concerns were flagged in this area. Outreach teams, primarily from the third sector, can then focus on visiting the flagged areas, trying to make contact with residents and helping those in need.

For media enquiries contact:

Leeds City Council Communications team