Finally, a smart city. – Top global speakers discussed the future of smart cities and called for a change.


Kuala Lumpur, October 01, 2016: The Asia Pacific Smart Cities Forum became a destination for global smart city experts on 27-28 September. One of the most exciting moments was meeting and listening to the Honorable YB Datuk Seri Panglima Madius Tangau, Minister of Science, Technology & Innovation, discuss “The DNA of a Smart City.”

We had the pleasure of having more than 180 delegates from MOSTI, Platcom Ventures, Tenaga Nasional and more. Speakers from the Netherlands, Portugal, Hong Kong, Japan and other Asian countries shared their expertise and key secrets of success. We all know that these countries are among the top 10 smart cities in the world.

We asked our top speakers some questions we would like to share with you. Mr. Martin Venzky- Stalling Senior Advisor of Chiang Mai University, says that Kuala Lumpur’s main problem of as a smart city is how to educate people:“People do not automatically understand what technologies can do for them. The challenge now is to create projects and visible smart city initiatives that in 2-3 years will show people why they are important for them. I think more people will have interest and come forward and ask you “How can I do this?” or “How can I do that?” When you talk about investment, I am a little skeptical that money is the solution.”

It seems that another one of our distinguish speakers, Mr. Dominic Yin, Chief Executive Officer from the Greater China Sustainable Development Council, also thinks that sharing knowledge with citizens has to be a priority in any city: “The number one important goal is to educate people, to make them smart, to understand why we want to make our city smart. Therefore, the education not only means high school or university, but encouraging people to think about the future.”

However, Mdm Maimunah Jaffar, Head of Planning & Compliance from the Iskandar Regional Development Authority, thinks that entrepreneurs should take into consideration rural areas as well:“I think the rural areas should be a focus for how to improve through smart city initiatives. Villages are antiquated. In the future, 70% of people will live in cities. If this happens, villages in rural areas will be unoccupied and there will be more congestion in the cities. We need to manage a balance.”

When we asked an expert from Amsterdam city about the huge amount of investments that are being made, Mr. Frans-Anton Vermast, a Senior Advisor from Low Carbon & Connected Urban Planning, said that: “I am not sure if a big amount of money will actually get to the smart cities movement on the go. Because there will be a lot of people that will apply for this money and when the money runs out, then probably projects will stop, so I think that you’ll have to rethink the whole financial model when it comes to smart cities. And I truly do not believe in a nationwide smart city strategy. I think you should focus on small regions and small cities and use this ultimate approach and it will spread like ink through blotting paper.”

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NAZIRA YERGALIYEVA | E: | T: +603 2027 4767

Corporate Comm India(CCI Newswire)