Three B.C. tech companies have won opportunities to work directly with government to improve programs and services for British Columbians.
B.C.’s Startup in Residence (STIR) program connects tech companies with government to rapidly co-develop, test and launch solutions to real-world public-sector challenges. Tech experts work with government professionals during a 16-week residency to develop cutting-edge solutions the companies own and can build on, and market to new customers.
The following companies are the successful proponents of the program’s second intake:
- Kinsol Research Inc. (Victoria) will join the Environmental Assessment Office to develop a way for proponents, stakeholders and First Nations to quickly and accurately identify topics from public feedback, which will aid the environmental assessment process.
- UrbanLogiq Software Inc. (Vancouver) will join the Ministry of Indigenous Relations and Reconciliation to help streamline its analysis of Crown land parcels to determine whether or not they should be included in negotiations with First Nations.
- Orpheus Key (Victoria) will join the Ministry of Jobs, Trade and Technology to help people looking for economic development-related grants and funding find accurate, up-to-date opportunities.
“B.C.’s tech sector has the entrepreneurial spirit and expertise to improve services people count on by developing solutions with government in a quick, collaborative manner,” said Jinny Sims, Minister of Citizens’ Services. “We have become more innovative, agile and result-oriented, making it easier for companies of all sizes to do business with government.”
In addition to owning the intellectual property, companies can reference the B.C. government as a customer, have a greater understanding about working with government, and explore opportunities to contract for further development, access or maintenance of the solution they created at the end of their residence.
"UrbanLogiq is honoured to support the Ministry of Indigenous Relations and Reconciliation in its work to advance an inclusive and lasting cross-government vision of reconciliation,” said Mark Masongsong, CEO, UrbanLogiq. “As a B.C. company that works with governments around the world, it is exciting to see the B.C. government take such strong leadership in embracing innovation to support the public service."
Sims will be hosting a panel with tech sector leaders, entrepreneurs, investors and others attending Vancouver Startup Week to discuss government’s new improved procurement processes – STIR and Sprint With Us – with recent successful proponents.
- STIR’s premise is that the best place to start is with a defined challenge versus a set of detailed requirements, and the best solutions come from open innovation.
- The STIR program was launched in 2017 and is the first program of its kind in Canada, modelled after a successful program in San Francisco.
- Companies will receive $10,000 during their 16-week residency period.
For information on the companies in the first B.C. STIR cohort, visit: gov.bc.ca/startupinresidence/alumni
Startup in Residence program: gov.bc.ca/startupinresidence
Sprint With Us program: https://bcdevexchange.org/sprintwithus