FNF launches the First Digital Smart Cities Week in Latin America
Smart Cities can be defined by their start-up culture, mobility policies, accessibility to services, environmental resilience as well as government transparency. In order to foster the exchange and implementation of best practices in these fields, in 2017 the Foundation created the Smart Cities Network Mexico-Central America. With the purpose of presenting smart city initiatives in the context of the pandemic, the Foundation launched the digital Smart Cities Week 2020.
Experts from Central America, Mexico, Peru, Argentina, Kosovo, Thailand and Korea analysed the principles of a Smart City. Founders of innovation hubs and start-ups agreed with former Mexican Senator Francisco Búrquez on the importance of a start-up city promoting an entrepreneurial culture and a less bureaucratic legal framework, which allows businesses and innovation to grow, therefore contributing to a constant reinvention of the local economy.
Mobility in a smart city stands for a matrix of different high-quality means of transportation as alternative to the car, offering an efficient and cost-effective service to the user. Citizens are therefore able to reach any given place in the city in the shortest possible time.
Specialists from the energy sector discussed the relevance of access to housing and efficient services as electricity and water. Duncan Wood from the Woodrow Wilson Centre and Diego Rivera of the APERC centre in Japan, concluded that an accessible city allows the market to play a critical role in the demand and supply of services.
Eugenia Correa from the Department for Sustainable Development in the city of Mérida presented some of the technological advances cities can implement to foster sustainability and environmental resilience which not only allows a better response to the consequences of climate change but the design of green infrastructure that makes live in a city pleasant.
Digitization promotes transparency and an efficient government functioning. Smart City Mayors furthermore emphasized on the significance of a transparent government, as it fosters citizens’ trust and acceptance of governmental decision-making and allows civic participation.
For 2021, the launch of the 1st Smart Cities Summit is planned to present further advances in cities of the region.