2016 Smart City Expo World Congress: Empowering Citizens in Barcelona
The 2016 edition of the Smart City Expo World Congress, which took place on 15-17 November in Barcelona, brought together 16,688 visitors, 591 exhibitors, 600 cities, 420 speakers, and 50 side events and activities. This year the event focused on the strategies and tools available to promote the empowerment of citizens and a greater involvement and participation in municipal processes and design.
According to tradition, the winners of the 2016 World Smart City Awards were announced. They have been selected for their cutting-edge initiatives that resolve urban challenges and benefit cities and their citizens. The city award went to New York, USA for the New York City's Strategy for Building a Smart + Equitable City. The project award was presented to Aspern Smart City Research (Vienna, Austria) for their Integrated Energy Research for the future. Last but not least, the Innovative Global South Award was given to Microclinic Technologies from Nairobi – Kenya for Transforming healthcare through hospital and clinic digitization and telemedicine.
Together with the Horizon 2020 project SMARTER TOGETHER and the EERA Joint Programme on Smart Cities, the Smart Cities Information System hosted more than 20 Expert sessions at our joint stand, which discussed citizen engagement, urban development strategies, technological innovations, policy and finance barriers and solutions, among others.
The lighthouse projects SMARTER TOGETHER, REMOURBAN, and SmartEnCity gave an overview of their city-wide plans covering the key pillars of a smart city – energy, mobility and transport, ICT and citizen engagement - and exchanged views about cross-city learning. Furthermore, the cities of Vienna, Milan, Munich and Lyon presented their plans and activities to engage citizens in the co-creation and take-up of smart city solutions. Strategic and replicable innovation was also illustrated by the CITyFiED project and their large scale demonstrations in three cities - Laguna de Duero-Valladolid (Spain), Soma (Turkey) and Lund (Sweden).
The European Innovation Partnership on Smart Cities and Communities and its objective to establish strategic partnerships between industry and European cities to develop future urban systems and infrastructures was presented by Mathias Reddmann from DG CONNECT in the European Commission. European initiatives supporting the smart cities landscape and community, among which EIP-SCC Market Place, CityKeys, Green Digital Charter, EERA Joint Programme on Smart Cities demonstrated tools and mechanism they have developed and explored collaboration potential through discussions.
The Smart Cities Information System held several sessions in which the SCIS team answered the question ‘Why we need a Smart Cities Information System?’, demonstrated the new data visualization approach developed by SCIS, and presented EU projects case studies on policy and finance barriers and solutions for innovation.