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SAS and the University of Edinburgh’s new Bayes Centre for Data Science and Technology have announced a new memorandum of understanding focused on data-driven innovation for public-sector benefit

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This new 3-year collaboration will involve SAS establishing a new innovation lab within the University’s Bayes Centre. Working with many different partner organisations, the initial focus will be delivering better public services through the use of data.

This new initiative supports the Edinburgh City Region Deal which includes a £1.1bn investment designed to accelerate economic development and inclusive growth. The City Region Deal will feature a data-driven innovation programme building on Edinburgh’s strengths in informatics and computing science and aims to make Scotland the data capital of Europe, with benefits shared widely.

Through data science and technology, we can capture flows of data to enable better and faster insights; identifying trends and behaviours across many sectors leading to improved services for consumers and citizens. One recent application of this technology has been focused on improving road traffic flows using real data to deliver ‘smart motorways’.

SAS is a leader in business analytics software and services and has been a strong supporter of Scotland’s innovation ecosystem for several years and opened a R&D Centre in Glasgow in 2013 and helped launch The Data Lab innovation centre in 2014.

Jim Goodnight, CEO and Founder of SAS, said: “SAS has a long history of working with Universities around the world and I’m personally excited to be able to offer the prestigious University of Edinburgh our new SAS Viya platform. I look forward to hearing how SAS, and our technology, can help you solve problems that will benefit the people and economy of Scotland, a country I always enjoy visiting.”

David Richardson, Director of Partnerships for the Bayes Centre, said: “We are delighted to begin this new collaboration in the Bayes Centre with SAS to deliver new strategic research initiatives alongside shorter-term projects that will deliver value to our public-sector partners.”

Hugo D’Ulisse, Director, SAS Scotland said “The Bayes Centre offers a unique opportunity for us to support the ambition of becoming the data science capital of Europe. Delivering data driven innovation requires many different forms of collaboration and this aligns well to SAS as we operate across the entire analytics life cycle – from data, to discovery, to deployment. Our new platform is able to inter-operate with popular open-source languages to provide a streamlined environment that will foster productivity, agility and tangible results”.