About Digital Tim

Hi, my name is Tim, I am a consultant and academic with an interest in how digital technology could be used to transform the world for the better.

The combination of my management experience, creative background and study of technology gives me a unique ability to help organisations re-imagine the future and their potential role in it.

My digital health doctorate could hardly be more relevant to the challenges people are facing around the world right now. I explored how digital technology could help improve healthcare efficiency. Much of the insight into digital transformation is however relevant to a wide variety of organizations, not just in health.

My arts background gives me a plethora of creative techniques that can be applied to digital innovation. During my management and organisational development career I applied my skills to develop innovative projects to address complex health and social challenges.

In management and leadership roles I developed a wide range of leadership and strategy skills including team building and change management. The combination of my management experience, creative background and study of technology gives me a unique ability to help organisations harness the potential of digital technologies to improve processes, find new business models or to improve services.

My approach typically combines systems thinking, creativity, research activities and  rigorous project management. Activities I can carry out include:

  • Workshop Facilitation
  • Business Models and Strategy, Reviews
  • Service Evaluation
  • User Research
  • Service Design
  • Project Management
  • Event Management
  • Future Scoping

I have experience in a range of consultancy, contracting and business development roles. I have provided consultancy and business development support in all of these. Clients have given me glowing feedback about my creativity, facilitation skills and ability to challenge with evidence. More detail about specific projects are outlined in my blog posts. Roles I am comfortable in include:

  • User Researcher
  • Service Designer
  • Business Development Manager / Consultant
  • Digital Innovation Consultant

Just to give a little more detail about how my background gives me deep insight into issues with the adoption of contemporary digital technology. One of the digital concepts I am most interested in is smart cities. Understanding the potential of smart cities requires thinking from a multidisciplinary perspective, it is as a least as much about understanding the urban environment as it is the technology. My first degree was urban planning, it included study of community development that is very much related to some of the citizen engagement ideas that is central to some conceptualisations of the smart city. Citizen science ideas, for example, are more about community development that technology development. My second degree was an MA in Sociology and Social Policy. Smart city ideas encompasses the internet of things, weaving monitoring devices into the fabric of the cities and homes that we live in. As technology becomes embedded into the urban environment, understanding its impact on our society becomes increasingly sociological.

Some years later I started a management/ business development career in the voluntary sector. Due to the nature of the sector I was working in these roles were very much connected to community development, and as such have informed my understanding of smart cities. Alongside professional roles I served on many different management committees. These included the main culture and health boards in Sheffield, where alongside the city’s main leaders I helped devise strategy for the city and help review the performance of public, private and community sector service providers.

Towards the end of my career in the community sector I took another postgraduate course, The Sheffield City Region Leadership Programme. The programme was designed to create a new generation of public sector leaders, giving participants skills in change management and innovation. The focus on public sector change and innovation is a perfect foundation for enabling cities to develop smart city approaches, and so it was a perfect foundation for my PhD. In my PhD, I studied how smart city and smart community approaches could be applied to improve efficiency.. My PhD focus was on the healthcare elements of smart cities, building on the community health understanding I had gained through professional and management committee roles. My educational qualifications and some of my publications and presentations are outlined in my university profile, here.

When engaging in healthcare roles my approach is informed by my own lived experience as a cancer patient and now as a cancer survivor as well as by my professional and academic roles. By living through intense engagement with the healthcare system I was able to see what was great and what could be better. It was my personal experience that motivated me to later research and work in healthcare. My passion and commitment to user centred approaches are also very much informed by my experience of being a human that experienced service delivery that was not as human centred as I would have liked.

Prior to moving into management roles I spent a decade as a professional circus and street theatre artist. During this time, I gained design skills through learning how to direct shows and facilitation shows through teaching hundreds of workshops to thousands of participants. More than anything else however my circus arts career gave me the ability to be creative, to innovate. Whilst working in the community sector I applied my creativity to develop innovative community service projects. In my PhD I applied my creativity to exploring creative approaches to improving public sector efficiency. Given everything I have outlined above, you might now see how I could have the perfect background to help your organisation develop innovative new service approaches and to improve efficiency, through the application of digital technology. If you want to discuss how I can help you or your organisation don’t hesitate in getting in touch, time is often crucial in this increasingly digital world that we all live in.

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