Meet the mVentures team

 Introducing Lacey Barnfather, Project Endeavour CAV Programme Manage

mV: Can you provide an overview of what Project Endeavour is?   

LB: Project Endeavour is here ultimately to pilot an AV rideshare passenger service in the London Borough of Greenwich, helping to clear the path for future implementation throughout the UK and beyond.    

The key here is that we are identifying what is required to implement technology that hasn’t been used before in these environments and then, one by one, overcome each obstacle to clear the path to bring AV services to market in the UK and beyond.   

We recognise that implementing such new innovative technology is complex in any environment, but to achieve the goals we are all striving for to reduce congestion, emissions and to provide accessible services to all it is not something you can do alone – especially when working towards commercial viability.  This is why Endeavour is being delivered by a consortium of 5 companies; Addison Lee Group (the service and operations), Oxbotica (the AV tech), dg cities (the city design), Immense Simulations (the simulation and modelling expertise) and Nominet (cyber security). The consortium is also supported by C-CAV and each partner brings different valuable skills and knowledge to the table. 

mV: Give us a synopsis of your role as CAV Programme Manager  

My role is to lead this consortium and to help us identify and navigate each one of the challenges we face whilst keeping on time and to budget.  It’s certainly is not straight forward and easy, the challenges are unchartered and by no means simple.  We have to question each assumption and work our way through all the really tricky areas such as how to you insure such a service? How do you regulate it? What are the operational impacts? How do you ensure a seamless customer experience? Will it have a positive effect on congestion? 

mV: Will you actually launch AV rideshare services in London by 2021?   

LB: In short – Yes. 

mV: What has been the most challenging and rewarding thing you’ve done since joining the mVentures team?  

LB: I have been part of the team for a little over 4 months now and the industry is new to me.  I’ve been in Telco for the last 10 or so years and Payments more recently, so whilst it has been challenging to learn about a new industry it has been the most rewarding part. I’ve had to immerse myself in the mobility industry and I am finding it beyond fascinating.   

The shift of business models and the technological advancement is astounding, let alone the impact to the environment, the air we breath and being able to offer services that genuinely make people’s lives easier.   I have a strong background in CX so being able to apply this to the services we offer is very rewarding.   

It’s  also a great opportunity for me to utilise my education in Systems Thinking and the sensitive levers to pull to ensure the desired impact on a city and technology adoption. 

mV: What’s your chosen hobby, food / cuisine and holiday destination?  

LB: So, I have many of the above, but ‘chosen’ is the important word here as I have two young children and as you’d expect from the above quite a demanding role; therefore, I choose what fits into life’s demands.   

I’ve dreamt of playing the piano my whole life so started lessons last year, progress is slow, but steady. I also love to spend time in the garden with the kids growing all sorts of produce and when I need a creative outlet I get very arty with their birthday cakes – it is amazing what you can make with fondant!  

To counteract the sugar I go to Pilates and try to fit a swim in whenever I can.  Travel wise things are quite different post having children, but the one continuity is my love of Canada.  My mother is Canadian, I am a dual citizen and I spent all my summers growing up there, so we try to get there whenever we can.  Work can be so very complex, so holiday time is about keeping life simple.