New mentoring platform, Wowment, is one of 50 recipients of Innovate UK’s Inclusive Innovation funding
Innovate UK has awarded Fran Boorman, founder of Goal 17 Ltd and mentoring platform Wowment, a £50,000 grant to develop inclusive AI technology.
Innovate UK’s Inclusive Innovation Award funds and supports a diverse range of businesses that are developing products, technologies and services that champion accessibility and inclusion.
Each winner receives the £50,000 grant to scale up an existing innovation or develop new inclusive products, processes, technologies or services.
Boorman, a former construction worker, is one of 50 winners of the funding, selected from 400 applicants. The grant will be used to support the development of Wowment, which integrates AI to help enhance mentoring relationships.
Commenting on the award, Boorman said: “We all know that mentoring makes a difference, but it is difficult to measure. Through the Inclusive Innovation Award, we are developing new AI technologies to help understand those relationships better.
“What makes this innovation game changing is how we will use that understanding to empower our construction clients to engage more within their communities.”
The Wowment platform will facilitate mentoring partnerships between construction workers and minority groups within local communities. The platform will then use AI to provide data and evidence to record the social impact construction workers are making.
The Innovate UK assessor who recommended Boorman for the award stated: "This is an extremely interesting proposition which certainly has the potential to be game changing in its field.
“The applicant is highly motivated and passionate about the challenge and given her track record there is a good chance that this will be successful and deliver a return on investment for the taxpayer."
Boorman added: “This is a win-win for communities and construction companies. Through using our platform, we will see more marginalised people transform their lives with the support of their mentors.
“The mentors themselves learn the skills to progress diverse talent within their organisations and open up new pools of talent. The cherry on the cake is that with this innovation we will then also be able to help these companies evidence the impact they are making to win more bids.”