Movement Strategies Spring 2020 newsletter : Covid-19

Moving forward...

It’s fair to say a lot has happened since our newsletter last Autumn. A key event for us was our merger with GHD at the end of 2019. However, this newsletter can only be about Covid-19.

Many of your friends, family, colleagues and yourselves will have been directly affected personally and some of you profoundly. I offer my sympathy and best wishes for those of you affected and realise that words can be inadequate in such unprecedented difficult circumstances.

Crisis drives innovation

Everyone will have been affected professionally and your organisations will have business or projects on hold or business models upended, but these times can also often open up new opportunities for innovation. Movement Strategies is no different in this respect.

We have already helped identify and implement practical social distancing solutions in places already opening. For example, see our recent work with Alder Hey Children's NHS Foundation Trust, and we are actively advising on reopening cultural sites and workplaces. Other areas include mobility studies based on cellular phone data for Central Government as well as insights for High Streets and places as the UK looks to come out of lockdown. If you have a challenge in terms of understanding how people move through a building or space, chances are we can help.

Through our partnership with GHD we have been working with some of the UK's leading construction companies in implementing innovative camera-based solutions to monitor and demonstrate the implementation of social distancing measures at a major construction site.

Consequently, we believe we have the expertise and tools to address these new challenges. Like many of you we are condensing months and years of thinking and R&D into days and weeks to pivot to new areas of endeavour. We will update you on our thinking and use cases for our solutions as they emerge, and the Pandemic context evolves, but I will finish with a few ideas on social distancing and its impact.

As ever, we welcome your thoughts on our newsletter and what Covid-19 means for you.

Best wishes and stay safe.

Simon Ancliffe

Executive Director

Movement Strategies Ltd (a GHD Company)

What do businesses need to do now and how can data and technology best support what safety and process measures need to be implemented?

1. Go beyond compliance to maximise safety and optimise productivity

We believe every organisation should pursue a bespoke approach that goes beyond 'do minimum' to achieve improvements in both safety and productivity.

2. Two components of social distancing

Social distancing can be considered to have two components: “static” and “dynamic” social distancing. Static social distancing includes people working while seated or standing and it is easier to consider; dynamic social distancing, when people are moving around, is more challenging.

Consideration of design principles and procedures to achieve dynamic social distancing will achieve a better result for your school, workplace or any place where people visit.  

3. Social distancing reduces productivity/area and the reduction will vary for different assets or their components

This has profound implications for asset value and the need to change layouts of operating assets.

The balance of spaces in a building or place will have to change to make the asset as productive as possible.


As part of GHD, our Advisory colleagues can help assess the commercial, operational & economic impacts of changes in throughput or capacity brought about by the Covid-19 response. GHD Advisory provides strategic, operational and commercial consulting to infrastructure clients globally with a real focus on value and client/community outcomes. Please click here to contact the Advisory team.