Archive for November, 2011

Touting the i-Canada movement – ‘It’s a global village and we all have to compete effectively.’

Thursday, November 17th, 2011

i-Canada Alliance
It’s been my great pleasure this week to extoll the virtues of the i-Canada movement and intelligent communities from the vantage point of this week’s i-Canada conference in Windsor. I was happy to speak to CBC Radio, and the coverage was subsequently extended to CBC News and Yahoo! Canada. Take a look:

Experts plan to make Canada smarter
i-Canada conference in Windsor aimed at making country more competitive on a global scale

Premiers, mayors and CEOs from communities across Canada will gather in Windsor this week to devise a strategy to make the country smarter.

The volunteer organization i-Canada is holding its advisory board meeting at Caesars Windsor on Thursday and Friday. The purpose is to encourage at least 50 Canadian communities to vie for the annual and international Intelligent Community of the Year Award.

Chair of i-Canada Bill Hutchison said the past 12 winning communities have experienced economic growth, increased employment and and improved social innovation immediately after the win.

Read the complete article here.

Creating Intelligent Communities is More Than a Technology Initiative

Wednesday, November 9th, 2011

Certainly the ever evolving IT and telecommunications technologies are the facilitators of tomorrow’s Smart/Intelligent Communities. But the real payoff is from the added initiatives focused on economic development and job creation along with the business and social innovation processes that are creating new models that benefit all citizens. That is why the announcement that Dr Sara Diamond has joined the i-CANADA Governors’ Council is so important.

Dr. Diamond, President of OCAD University is a recognized international leader in the “Creative Space”. OCAD U began its life as the Ontario College of Art and Design and its evolution to university status reflects the quality of its curriculum, research and graduate students over many years. Her participation in the i-CANADA Alliance will help to ensure that the value to communities of the creative and social side of life continues to be reflected in i-CANADA initiatives as we move forward.

Join the the i-Canada Summit in Two Weeks!

Thursday, November 3rd, 2011

i-Canada Alliance
The i-CANADA “New National Dream” Summit at Caesar’s in Windsor on November 16-17, 2011 was originally planned as a smaller meeting of the i-CANADA Advisory Board. Attendance has grown beyond the original plan because of the interest by many who signed the Declaration on LinkedIn to create the i-Canada Alliance as a national movement.

Attendance now includes members of the i-CANADA Council of Governors, Mayors, dozens of Economic Development Officers, industry executives, academia, and community leaders in Health Care, First Responder, Creative Arts, Productivity, Human Resources, and other stakeholder groups.

Discussion and collaboration at the Summit is crystallizing around:

  • A unique quick Self Assessment i-CAT guide to map communities through the process of becoming more globally competitive as “Smart Cities”; it is the product of massive collaboration with industry , academic and i-community leaders such as IBM, Intel, FunctionFour, ING DIRECT, Miller Thomson, Rhyzome Networks, Ryerson University and the City of Windsor.
  • The ‘Growing Millionaires’ ecosystem model from New Brunswick: “We used to be known for potatoes and fish; now New Brunswick is a showcase for digital investments and green waves of wealth.”
  • Resource matchmaking between vendors and community leaders, to match the latest methods and services with the pressing needs of community officers charged with evolving their cities.
  • Dashboards that provide at-a-glance views of a city’s systems and operations.
  • Matching Toronto’s i-Waterfront Challenge of one gigabit per second bandwidth from your home and much more for business – and what it does for healthcare, the arts, policing, city administration and the need to keep up with the best.
  • Proven Processes and Best Practices for creating some of the world’s leading i-Communities.

The Summit in Windsor is definitely the place to be for anyone interested in supporting these goals and the i-CANADA national movement while trading ideas on how to transform their community into an i-Community … whether it is a region, a city or a smaller community … local or remote.

The IBM Intelligent Operations Center (IOC) for Smarter Cities will be demonstrated and it is an important development for the transformation of community operations management in tomorrow’s communities. Think of a dashboard that allows for the monitoring and potential control of certain city operations from one central location. The IOC will be demonstrated with the i-CANADA Assessment Tools (i-CAT) in what will truly be an amazing world first. i-CAT has been created over the past year by an i-CANADA sponsored initiative comprised of seventeen leaders in community measurement and operations from the corporate, academic, research, consulting and municipal worlds.

i-CANADA is not just about technology and communications infrastructure although ICT certainly provides the foundation and we intend to continually promote the best and newest in ICT to become globally competitive. It is a great opportunity for our ICT companies too. IDC government Insights estimates that the Smarter Cities IT market is $34 billion in 2011 rising to $57 billion in 2014, and increase of 18% per year.

The Summit and the i-CANADA movement also promotes the other essential elements in an i-Community including effective marketing of the community, a focus on digital democracies and a wide range of creative and social innovations. Canadians from the creative and social sectors will be there to share their ideas for moving forward.
Broadband for rural and remote areas is an important one too so come and meet Suvi Linden who is flying in from Finland to speak. Dr Linden was Minister of Communications when her government was the first in the world to implement legislation declaring “Access to Broadband is a Fundamental Right”. Rest assured it will be a rich discussion of many opportunities when we meet at the i-CANADA Summit in Windsor. Everyone who supports the i-CANADA movement and wants to help their community’s transformation to renewed economic and social innovation should be there.