Khan unveils plan to turn Thames Estuary into creative industries hub

Khan launches search for London’s first chief digital officer

Following the appointment of the capital's first ever 'Night Czar, the Mayor of London Sadiq Khan is now looking to recruit London's first chief digital officer.

London is widely regarded as Europe’s leading technology hub with more than 40,000 digital technology companies employing approximately 250,000 people.

More than a third of these businesses have been set up in the last five years and it is forecast that a further 12,500 will have been created by 2025.

With this in mind, Khan wants London to be the world’s leading ‘smart city’ – with digital technology at the heart of making the capital an even better place to live, work and invest.

Fulfilling a manifesto commitment, the new CDO will be tasked with ensuring that London’s globally renowned reputation for technological innovation is used to transform the way that public services are delivered in London, making them more accessible, efficient, and better suited to the needs of Londoners.

London is already a world leader in the use of digital and smart technology to improve public services and city life. Examples range from ticketing and contactless technology on the transport network, to the London Datastore – a free and open resource where anyone can access vast amounts of data relating to the city, including tech start-ups which have used open data to create new apps.

Khan said: “London is a world-leading hub for digital technology, data science and urban innovation. These technologies have the potential to transform the way that Londoners and visitors experience our city.

“I want to take the digital transformation of our public services to the next level, so we can improve the ways in which we plan and deliver public services for Londoners.

“I am delighted to begin my search for a chief digital officer, so we can make London an even smarter smart city and use our incredible technological abilities to the best effect.”

The new CDO will work with the Mayor’s Office, the Mayor’s Smart London Board, local authorities and the technology sector to encourage collaboration and adoption of common standards around data and service transformation, to drive the development of smart-city technology, and to build London’s reputation as the city that the world looks to for leadership in urban innovation.

They will also work with the Smart London Board and City Hall to develop and subsequently deliver a new Smart London Strategy that will open up London to innovation through smart technologies and programmes.

In addition, they will anticipate the impacts of new disruptive and transformative technologies and ensure timely responses from the GLA group both in terms of policy and action, and promote and support the implementation of the Mayor’s digital inclusion and cyber-security policies.