Norfolk County Council attended the Natural Environment Research Council’s envEXPO 2017 to showcase the work of BID-REX. The agenda of the three-day annual conference focused on the environmental challenges facing business, industry and policy makers, with an emphasis on how Big Data can help address environmental problems.

The Council was invited to hold a stand, where they presented the way that technologies such as Earth Observation can be used to answer key questions for decision-makers. With delegates coming from a range of environmental backgrounds, a number of useful contacts were made and new stakeholders identified.

A running theme throughout discussions at the conference was the need for better connectivity between data and decision makers. It was also recognised that Big Data is not necessarily the most suitable for decision makers; smaller, verified data sets were perceived to be of higher quality. The need for interpretation of data into products such as Ecosystem Services and Natural Capital maps to allow decision makers to answer policy questions was also a key outcome.