Global policymakers sign ITU smart city declaration

By Dylan Bushell-Embling
Monday, 12 September, 2016

Global policymakers sign ITU smart city declaration

Policymakers from around the world have pledged to take the actions required to transition to smart sustainable cities at the International Telecommunication Union's 6th annual Green Standards Week.

More than 650 participants, including ministers, mayors, businesses and academics, have agreed to the Montevideo Declaration in Uruguay, which aims to address the sustainability challenges arising from an increasingly urbanised population.

The UN estimates that 70% of the world's population will be living in cities by 2050, which will present major challenges in terms of supplying basic requirements including food, water and energy efficiency while ensuring economic, social and environmental sustainability.

The declaration promotes the use of international technical standards and KPIs to achieve sustainable development in urban areas and meet these challenges.

It encourages the use of open data platforms and a central knowledge base, as well as developing practices for e-waste management and improving ICT accessibility.

The Montevideo declaration also promotes smart sustainable cities and technologies as key elements of the UN's new urban agenda, which will be adopted at the global Habitat III summit next month.

In a separate but related development, nearly 400 entrepreneurs, experts and policymakers have pledged a commitment to ICT education and training to help companies achieve the sustainable development goals through digital transformation initiatives.

At the ITU's Global ICT Capacity Building Symposium in Naiobi, participants discussed expected future priorities for capacity building and new skill requirements in today's fast-changing ICT environment.

Image courtesy of Kyle MacKenzie under CC

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