Languedoc Roussillon regional council wins ESRI SAG Award for its iPad application developed by Bull
The iRégion geolocation-enabled iPad application provides context-sensitive, comprehensive and up-to-date information to decision-makers from the Languedoc Roussillon region, when they are out and about.
Bull has just received recognition for the design and development of the iRégion application which runs on the iPads used by council managers in the French region. From now on, when they go out into the field, decision-makers from the Languedoc Roussillon regional council will be able to get direct, instant access to information held in the council’s Geographic Information (GIS) and Business Intelligence (BI) systems.
Whether during an information-gathering meeting or a working session with local participants, regional council representatives need access to precise and up-to-date information about the local context, actions that have already been taken and on-going projects. Designed and developed by Bull, this innovative tool helps council managers in their interventions, brings them closer to local areas and the citizens that live there.
Consistent with the typical navigation, presentation and use of the iPad, the iRégion application gives its users intuitive access to thematic or detailed information – via a dashboard featuring geolocation – presented in the form of maps or files. It only takes two clicks, for example, to bring up the whole file for one of the schools in a particular town where the user is working.
Combining GIS and BI through geolocation
iRégion connects to the council’s GIS (ESRI’s ArcGIS) and Business Intelligence information systems (Business Objects from SAP) via a single application portal (Tomcat), which enables data to be presented as a summary, that is guaranteed to be up to date.
Presenting information by topic (education, transport, tourism…) also extends the regional council’s cross-departmental approach to its work. “Cross-departmental working is a strategic approach for the Languedoc Roussillon region, because it allows us to boost the synergies between our various skills and make a much greater impact with our interventions,” confirms Thierry Camuzat, Deputy MD for Services.
An innovative project born out of a creative and pragmatic approach, iRégion was made possible thanks to the region’s long-standing investment in information systems and the management of its data, as well as its decision to use open technologies.
“The local authority sector is a strategic one for Bull and we are currently investing in heavily in this market. Our software center of expertise has already developed Coriolis for public sector financial management and Sirus for social welfare,” explains Thierry Siouffi, Director of Bull’s Business Integrated Solutions business line. “We are proud to be associated with this project, which is bringing local government and citizens closer together and improving public sector efficiency. In order to build this application, Bull developed specialist expertise in iPad technologies, which was effectively combined with our existing expertise in GIS and Business Intelligence environments. In addition, this project – which also involved ESRI and SAP – perfectly illustrates our strategy of building strong partnerships around high added-value offerings.”
Initially offered in the form of a pilot project with a limited scope, before being extended to cover all the region’s key topics, iRégion immediately won over its initial users who liked the modern look and feel, ease of use (the iPad is much easier to carry around when out on a visit than a heavy file full of papers) and the way in which the application added an extra dimension to their discussions with local contacts.
About the Languedoc Roussillon region
Under the leadership of its President, Christian Bourquin, the Languedoc Roussillon region promotes its agricultural and food products through its Sud de France (South of France) brand, as well as its tourism, with its heritage, culture and inimitable way of life, unique to this land between the mountains and the Mediterranean. The region brings this distinctive heritage to life through its commitment to education, training for employment, transport services and support for business, aimed at enhancing the attractiveness of the area (the fastest growing demographic in France) and its economic dynamism. With over 93,000 students and almost 5,500 researchers among its 2.8 million inhabitants, the region is one of the main centers for higher education and research in France. Big companies and innovative SMEs alike have found Languedoc Roussillon to be a fertile ground for their development, and together they form a vibrant economic ecosystem where leading-edge technologies (IT, life and health sciences, environmental sciences…) are especially well represented. With its clear focus on the future, the regional council’s own projects set the example when it comes to innovation: whether it is the LoRdi laptops it has distributed to all secondary school pupils or the iRégion application.