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Connected Places Podcast Episode 6: "What now for Real Estate?"

The pandemic has had a huge impact on our built environment, but so too has the economic fallout. Any economic recovery, whenever or however it may come, is going to rely on our ability to create physical environments where we feel safe, as well as new business models that take account of our new reality.

So in this episode we’ll be asking, “What now for the real estate sector?” And where might the opportunities lie for innovation in how we imagine, design and operate our buildings and physical assets?

In this sixth and final episode of season one of Connected Places, Professor Greg Clark speaks to Rosemary Feenan, Executive Vice President of QuadReal how the COVID-19 pandemic is affecting the real estate sector and cities around the world.

We’ll also be hearing from Yalena Coleman, Solution Architect for Applied Data & Technology at Connected Places. We’ll be talking about the Catapult’s Urban Technology Testbed, and how we’ve turned our own office building in London into a place of experimentation for businesses and innovators.

Music on this episode is by Blue Dot Sessions and Phill Ward Music (

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Show notes


Rosemary Feenan is Executive Vice President of QuadReal, a global real estate investment group headquartered in Vancouver. An expert on real estate futures, urbanisation, city competitiveness and technology in real estate, she was previously Director of Global Research Programmes at JLL. Rosemary has served on the Boards of Chesterton International, the Urban Land Institute, the Centre for Cities, and she sits on the World Economic Forum’s ‘Future of Cities and Urbanisation’ Council.

Yalena Coleman is Solution Architect for Applied Data and Technology at the Connected Places Catapult. She has played a leading role in shaping the Catapult’s Urban Technology Testbed programme, which facilitates the testing of new and emerging technologies in the built environment and how data-driven decision making can be harnessed across the public and private sectors. Yalena has worked in multiple industries across the technology sector in Europe, Asia and Africa, including software development, IoT, digital strategy and cybersecurity.

If you’d like to know more about QuadReal’s Oak Ridge development, you can learn more here.

You can also learn more about the Catapult’s Urban Technology Testbed, as well as the Catapult’s approach to creating digital twins in the built environment, and a short video about our Advanced Building Information System.

To learn more about what the Catapult is doing to support innovators and place leaders rise to the challenge of COVID-19, check out our Post-Pandemic Places Hub which explores the market opportunities the pandemic is creating or accelerating, including a briefing on the built environment which includes real estate and asset management.

The Catapult has also published a new report looking at mental health and emotional wellbeing for city dwellers. You can read ‘Cities on the Couch’ by Prof. Sarah Niblock, Chief Executive of The UK Council for Psychotherapy by clicking here.

To apply to be part of our upcoming MK:5G Accelerator Programme and the work we are doing with businesses working on 5g technology solutions, please click here.

To register for a webinar on Glasgow’s Net-Zero Carbon ambitions, which the Catapult and the Centre for Liveable Cities are jointly hosting on 8th October, click here.

To find out more about what we do at the Connected Places Catapult and to hear about the latest news, events and announcements, please sign up to our newsletter!


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