Jenny Milne is based in Scotland but enjoys travel and as such has lived overseas and travelled around the globe and her energy and enthusiasm often earns her the reputation of being a ‘pocket rocket’. This description sums up well her enthusiasm and passion for social policy and transport. Very much an ‘out of the box’ thinker, Jenny is strategic and visionary and is well known for facilitating innovation and delivering on projects.
Jenny started out with the idea of being a sports or school teacher and to this day enjoys delivering training on subjects such as procurement or in her own time, teaching skiing and helping others. For a while, Jenny worked at both Universities in Aberdeen lecturing under and postgraduates in social policy, politics and European and comparative policy building on her BA (Hons) Social Policy from University of York and an MLITT in Applied European Studies at Aberdeen. Jenny also undertook research for Oxfam and the universities as well as writing some of the first online course material. Publications also included chapters in the International Encyclopedia on Social Policy on youth policy and pressure groups. Then the calling came to help ‘bridge the gap’ between policy and reality in the transport industry. Social exclusion and inclusive access were (and still are) key issues to Jenny as the economy is dependent upon engagement by individuals. Any barriers restrict growth and opportunity and fundamentally if an individual is unable to be included and have equal access, disengagement leads to lack of opportunity and fairness. This theme was key to Jenny establishing JLM in 2010 having witnessed the growth in the technology in the transport field, her knowledge, enthusiasm and skill set could benefit a wider audience. Having previous hands on experience of running a company with up to 50 employees, Jenny realized the areas she wished to focus on- business, training, strategy, research and analysis, innovation and funding and last but by no means least, enterprise and entrepreneurship. Consequently Jenny was asked to join a number of organisations on a voluntary basis, to help.
Over the last ten years this has evolved and it is always difficult to describe in one sentence what Jenny does as it ranges from client to client. For some it is merely being a sounding board, for others it’s helping review procurement and put in place a strategy for improvement. Some clients utilize Jenny for training as the ‘out of the box’ thinking ensures a dynamic and powerpoint free session which in turn places Jenny in the position to ‘train trainers’. For other clients, it’s help sourcing funding for projects or undertaking a facilitating role as Jenny is widely recognized as ‘knowing the right people’ or ‘knowing the people that can help’. Underlying these skills is the ability to build upon a companies strengths whilst also introducing elements of innovation and a ‘fresh approach’ which is why Jenny is often called to help develop products or services no matter what the sector oil/environmental/ logistics/third sector/technology/public sector. To that end, Jenny’s job title reads as ‘Strategic Development’ and if anyone else has a better title then just let us know!
For those interested in the transport industry, having spent nearly 20years in the ITS and technology field, Jenny is currently involved in a number of projects, but one of growing interest to many is based upon the rural economy in Scotland. (Spot the social policy connection!) This originated from her first hand experiences from the last decade having a cottage in Boat of Garten which is based in the Cairngorms National Park. The area consists of 5 local authorities, 3 RTPs, several transport providers for bus, rail, community transport, taxi, cycle hire etc as well as community and business organisations. Until 2016 there was no joint partnership/board working towards a solution fit for visitors and residents alike. The challenges range from no 3G/GPRS, mountains and a fractured transport network. Jenny has brought together all the stakeholders from the ground level (community/businesses) to the top (Government organisations) together with the vision and determination to deliver Mobility as a Service. Given what’s already been said about the ‘pocket rocket’, it will be of no surprise to learn that Jenny took on a part time PhD in 2018 on Rural Mobility as a Service (R-MaaS) and in 2019 secured Innovate UK funding for Cairngorms Connected. Jenny was also involved in a project led by Connected Places Catapult in Aberdeenshire on understanding the need and demand for rural mobility services