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Celebrating Innovation in ICT

SustainIT - a UK-base charity - has launched the 2006/07 National eWell-Being Awards.

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The National eWell-Being Awards, the UK’s only national awards programme to celebrate the social, economic and environmental benefits of Information and Communication Technologies (ICT), is calling for entries for 2006/2007.

Now in their fifth year, the National eWell-Being Awards identify and promote the most innovative uses of ICT by local authorities, businesses, third sector organisations and academic institutions.

The awards, developed by SustainIT, an initiative of the UK Centre for Economic and Environmental Development (UK CEED), have attracted over 400 high quality entries across a range of categories since their inception in 2002.

Simon Hills, Head of SustainIT, says that “the National eWell-Being Awards are all about rewarding organisations which use technology in an innovative way to benefit the environment and peoples’ lives. Winning an award can really help put an organisation on the map and can encourage others to follow examples of good practice.”

This year, there are six award categories:

• Digital Inclusion – sponsored by BT
• Age and Disability – sponsored by BT’s Disability Action Team
• Improving Public Services – jointly sponsored by IDeA (Improvement and Development Agency), eGov Monitor and e-Government Bulletin
• Climate Change and Environmental Efficiency – sponsored by UK CEED
• Better Ways of Working – sponsored by Brother
• Building Social Networks – sponsored by AOL

Mike Dinsdale, communications director at Brother UK, sponsors of the Better Ways of Working category, explains: “practising and promoting good social and environmental practice is a key focus of our business and we are delighted to be a sponsor of the National eWell-Being Awards for the third consecutive year. ICT is a powerful tool in enriching the environment, economy and society and we are eager to champion those organisations that are leading the way.”

In addition, SustainIT is delighted to announce the introduction of three Special Awards for 2006/07:

• Environmental Product Innovation – sponsored by PC Pro
• ICT Innovation in the Third Sector – sponsored by ICT Hub
• Inclusion Through Partnership and Innovation – sponsored by Digital Challenge Inclusion Network.

For the second consecutive year, The Independent newspaper will be the national media partner for the awards.

Last year’s winners included Bellwether Enterprises, a specialist railway engineering and technical consultancy that has adopted a range of ICT solutions to pioneer truly integrated, flexible working practices. Graeme Lloyd-Roberts, a director at Bellwether Enterprises, says: “winning an eWell-Being Award has really raised our profile through the fantastic publicity we received. The company has continued to grow as a result of the additional recognition.”

ENWORKS, based in Manchester, has developed an online toolkit to help businesses use resources more efficiently and to quantify the resulting economic and environmental improvements. It won last year’s Climate Change and Environmental Efficiency category.

"Winning the award has proved to be a real boost, enabling us to develop further and faster than we would otherwise have been able. The award means we now have more companies using the online toolkit, saving more money, using less energy and fewer materials - and that has to be a good thing for the planet and the bottom line," says Todd Holden, programme director at ENWORKS.

To enter the 2006/07 National eWell-Being Awards, entrants must complete the Awards entry form available at www.sustainit.org. Projects must have been running for at least three months and applicants may enter a single project in up to two relevant categories. The closing date for entries is Thursday 30th November 2006. Winning projects will be announced at an Awards ceremony at a prestigious London venue (tbc) in March 2006.

For further information about the awards, please contact Simon Hills or Richard Craven at SustainIT, tel: 01733 312286 or email: awards@sustainit.org

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