05 June 2013

Intelligent Communities

The annual I-Canada Intelligent Communities Summit was convened at the George Brown College Waterfront campus these past two days, featuring some excellent discussion on the nature of smart cities and how they enable greater productivity and citizen engagement. GBC President Anne Sado opened the second day of the summit, referring to college graduates who gain innovation literacy are key to the future of resilient and innovative communities because their skills enable them to promote "change they generate, versus change they just react to." This is an important point relating to the value of experiential learning and our role as enablers of the innovation economy.

Highlights included discussion on public safety, civic governance, and on day two a panel discussion on mobile technology, launched with a keynote by OCADU President Sara Diamond who talked about the results of the Taking Ontario Mobile report put out by the Mobile Experience Innovation Centre. I was part of a panel on health as enabled by intelligent networks. The panel was moderated by Cisco-s Rick Huijbregts, and included a discussion about the need for decision making and governance by ETC's Jim Gragtmans, Tridel's CIO Ted Maulucci, who spoke about the need to accelerate the physical build of infrastructure to enable health, such as in seniors' centres and other consumer oriented health contexts, and GBC Research partner Tenet Computer Group's Carlos Paz-Soldan, who spoke about GreenRack and Augmundo, technologies that enable real time and location based access to health care information. Cisco had a mobile health unit on display that showcased technology that can enable community health care linked to providers via Internet technologies. All in all a lot of impressive demos and discussion about how a future world of intelligent infrastructure (read: Internet technologies to enable living and working) can lead to improved outcomes: social, economic, and health.

The summit continues over the next two days in New York.