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Sponsors Report
January - June 2020


  1. Introduction
  2. Your Sponsorship
  3. Strategy
  4. Innovation
  5. Projects
  6. Events
  7. Communications
  8. Dashboard
  9. Social, charity, and sustainability
  10. The future


has been a challenge, and has highlighted that we need radical, collaborative innovation now more than ever. Our sponsors have been a part of that and will continue to play a vital role as we move forward. Looking back to 2019, ODI Leeds celebrated turning 5 years old, which is a fantastic achievement in itself for a pioneering start-up. We could not have come this far without you, so this annual report includes all of the highlights and data that will help you understand why your sponsorship is so important - its value to you and others - and aid your decisions to maintain your support for ODI Leeds and its activities for the rest of 2020 and beyond.

We have all worked to create a nationally and globally recognised organisation for the region that is a new type of institution - one that is #RadicallyOpen, with a mission, using #CatalyticCollaboration to build and create real outcomes, focused on data and innovation.

We know that we just would not be successful without the people and sponsors who we work with.

Our plans for the next 5 years will be equally ambitious and #RadicallyOpen, with a mission to make a difference for Leeds and the North of England, which I'm sure you, and your partners will be able to get behind and continue to support.

If we tried to do this any other way imagine the cost, the resource requirements, and the bureaucracy! Being #RadicallyOpen with ODI Leeds has really demonstrated what can be achieved with no direct funding and when we align interests, collaborate, and be massively ambitious.

Thank you and here's to your continued support.

Paul Connell & The ODI Leeds team

Your sponsorship

Your year with ODI Leeds:

It is down to you that we have an innovative eco-system, network, and knowledge sharing group that benefits all of those involved as well as the wider region. We have been successful to date in retaining all of our sponsors since our launch 5 years ago. In 2019 we continued to attract and welcome new organisations to this group with 4 new sponsors;

  1. NHS X
  2. Northern Powergrid
  3. Northern Gas Networks
  4. Future Gov

Sponsor package

Your annual sponsorship rate is currently £15,000 per/annum and renews in June

A reminder of what you get for your sponsorship:

Most sponsors so far have either already signed up for another year or have expressed an intention to, we can't stress enough that our work and success would not be possible without you as collaboration is key to growth.

We, with your support, have created a New Institution fit for the new economy of the 2020's.

This is generated automatically for sponsors listed in the sponsors file who are/were sponsors in the current year.
Our sponsors during 2019-2020


As we grow into a scale-up organisation, it was important to develop and publish our first 'open strategy,' which aims to set a fluid timeline and set of core themes for us to work towards over the next 5 years. It was built on the challenges that are important to us, to our sponsors, and to the wider world. The open strategy is as flexible as we are - we know what we'd like to work on but we're open to other work, projects, and opportunities along the way, and we hope you'll join us.

Being us we got to work straight away and launched Open Gov Tech in September 2019 and will launch Open Data Saves Lives in January 2020.

If you want to get involved with any of the core themes - Radically Open, Open Transport, Open GovTech, and Open Data Saves Lives - then get in touch and we'll have a chat. The more you get involved, the more you will get out of your sponsorship. We publish a monthly newsletter, filled with news, updates and projects. If you haven't done so already, we would highly recommend signing up to the sponsors mailing list (and encouraging interested folk within your organisation to sign up too).


Lead by Paul Connell

Innovation is what ODI Leeds is all about. It happens all the time in our purpose built innovation space. We have developed and created our own methods and tools to do open innovation with a purpose. The #RadicallyOpen approach means that all the assets, conversation, and development is done in the open - we start small, have clear problems to fix, and engage as many and as diverse types of people and organisations as possible.

In 2019 we did our own innovation projects: #OpenGovTech, #OpenDataSavesLives, #PlanetData, and #DiversityData. We helped others do it:

We hosted others when they are doing it.

Innovation events

"Big" innovation events are those that have been listed as "*" for sponsors in the innovation.csv file. You can also update their descriptions and dates in that file.
Innovation list

Other innovation events

Other innovation events


Stuart Lowe, Patrick Lake, Tom Forth, Dan Billingsley, Giles Dring

Projects started in, ended in, or covered all of 2019. Update the "Sponsors" column of the projects file.

Our team of data scientists and developers work on your behalf to design, build, and produce some ground-breaking and important work. During 2019 we worked on X open data and innovation projects.

Events and workspace

Kathryn Connell

Use of the ODI Leeds workspace by ourselves, our sponsors, and the wider community is a core element of the work we do. With the aid of your sponsorship, ODI Leeds continues to invest in the space - in AV kit, decor, innovation tools, furniture, etc, so that the space continues to be flexible and innovative. saw our busiest year ever. Over 5,777 people were welcomed into the space. We held over 277 events and meetings, up a staggering 56% year-on-year. Many locally based companies now regularly use ODI Leeds such as BBC, Sky, Asda, Unilever, Siemens, Cox Automotive, alongside data experts like DWP, BPDTS. Community groups and educational initiatives also regularly use the space, like Coders Guild and HubHub. They all love the flexibility, the floor to ceiling wipeable whitewalls, the space and energy, and our friendly and helpful team plus the lunches are the best in Leeds :)

Remember we always give priority to sponsors and a healthy 50% discount on space hire. This year sponsors accounted for over half of all events held.

received a total discount of &;pound, worth the sponsorship cost alone.

Total number of events hosted:
Cost of using the workspace (based on standard rate for room hire, desk hire):
Savings made by being a sponsor with 50% sponsor rates:
Drop-in coworking sessions:
Total no. of NAME guests/attendees
Value of ODI Leeds-hosted events:
Total number of events:227
No. of people through the door:5777
No. of people viewing live streams:

Here are the events NAME have organised:

This comes from an export of the Workspace Count spreadsheet. URLs can be added to the "Notes" column. To be included in the top list it needs to have "TRUE" in the middle column for that sponsor.

Here are the co-working slots NAME has used:

Here are other events NAME have participated in:

We host and run events to innovate and share so please keep following us on Twitter, and checking our calendar to make sure you don�t miss out. The more you get involved, the more you will get out of your sponsorship. We also send out event invitations and project opportunities via email, so if you need to put more of your team on the mailing list just let us know.

  • Northernlands break-out group
  • Northernlands break-out group
  • Northernlands
  • Mr Gee
  • Post-it notes during #HackForImpact
  • Diversity Data Event
  • #HackForImpact
  • #PlanetData
  • #PlanetData post-its
Northernlands Data and Startup Summit
Northernlands Data and Startup Summit
Simon Smits - Dutch Ambassador
Simon Smits - Dutch Ambassador


Amy Evans

We probably need to explain March (petition) and December (election).

We have a very active social media profile covering Twitter, Facebook, LinkedIn, Instagram, and YouTube. It has enabled us to communicate and engage with an audience that covers the whole of the UK and beyond, sharing our news, project outcomes, innovation work, and more. Social media has also helped us grow our network by connecting us with new collaborators. Please do follow us and join in with our open conversations, and share your stories and priorities with us so we can share them. This social media presence is important in raising awareness, sharing info, and also has a monetary value relative to our sponsors. Our annual social media value is worth over £100,000 and if even a little is attributed to our sponsors that's a worthwhile statistic.

Website visits

Website breakdown

Twitter impressions

Twitter breakdown

Facebook impressions

Facebook breakdown

LinkedIn impressions

LinkedIn breakdown

YouTube views

YouTube breakdown


Website visits:455,943
Twitter impressions:1,908,000
New Twitter followers:748
Facebook posts:354
Facebook impressions:12,187
Facebook reach:10,117
LinkedIn impressions:15,798
Youtube viewing time (across all videos):5977 minutes
Youtube unique views:522

Streaming our events via YouTube allowed us to not only reach new audiences but also provide a way for people to stay informed about our work and projects if they couldn't attend events in person.

Media highlights

2019 was a great year for ODI Leeds being featured in mainstream media. Appearances on national and local TV reached an excess of 2 million viewers, whilst coverage on local press and online, accounted for a further 1 million+ views. PR is difficult to measure but in advertising value this kind of coverage would be worth £100,000 alone.

Our petition hex map viewer hit the headlines in late March when a petition on a second Referendum overwhelmed the House of Commons Petition site and our hex map became the go-to place for those keeping tabs on the number of signatures. It was covered in the Guardian and on Yahoo News. Later in the year, the General Election saw hex maps surging in popularity. Although there were several rival layouts, our open constituencies hex map layout was used by Sky News, by Flavible Politics, by Flourish (a data visualisation platform) and on New Statesman's live election night coverage.


Our dashboard is used to measure our progress and success, where you can find data about our social media, network, projects, and more. Each year so far we have increased each element, numbers of sponsors, numbers of innovation projects, numbers of events, attendance at events, website visits, social media reach - all delivering value to our sponsors.

Social, charity, and sustainability

We get asked a lot by a wide variety of organisations to use our space, resources, and services for free. As a not for profit, non funded organisation we simply cannot operate on this basis. However, we do choose a couple of relevant projects each year to support with some of the funds raised by sponsorship and events. ODI Leeds and friends will be donating over £500 this year Simon on the Streets. We have also offered our space free to any organisations/groups working on Climate Emergency projects.

As part of our sustainable ethos, we try our best to be as green as we can - recycling, re-using, using local suppliers and products, cycling, walking and using public transport for getting to work and meetings, promoting sustainable projects, running events like Planet Data, and introducing vegetarian and vegan only catering. We hope you will support us in this campaign.

The future

We set out our plans to move from start-up to scale-up in our Open Strategy, and we promise we will:

Specifically we'll be working on our activity around our our scale-up strategy programme.

Graphical timeline of ODI Leeds events for 2020
ODI Leeds Strategy - events for 2020

The unique circumstances of 2020 has forced everyone to react and respond in new ways and we are no different. We took our events and regular meetings - like #OpenDataSavesLives - online, and we even delivered a larger scale interactive event in the form of #PlanetData2, using virtual breakout rooms to stiumlate discussion about the Climate Emergency. We are committed to open innovation that benefits everyone, including our sponsors. We will continue to innovate with the ways we communicate and engage with people, deliver open data projects, and support our sponsors through challenging times.

Very best,

Paul and the ODI Leeds team

Acknowledgements & Notes

This section is generated automatically.