May 2017

Smart Dubai’s Accomplishments Take Centre Stage at Smart Cities NYC Conference and Expo

H.E. Dr Aisha Bint Butti Bin Bishr:
• The conference gathers international experts in smart city development, and creates synergy and momentum for the global smart city movement.
• We are passionate about sharing our successes with likeminded ambitious organisations and individuals around the world, in order to play our part in the development of the smart city as a concept – worldwide.

H.E. Younus Al Nasser:
• We were happy to learn that several major cities have indeed started to look to Dubai as an example in building the cities of the future. The UAE boasts a set of resources that qualifies it to compete on a global level. H.E. Wesam Lootah:
• The event provides an ideal opportunity for us to measure our successes against achievements made by our international counterparts…we were proud to see that, in many areas and sectors, Dubai is leading the charge with its bold and innovative initiatives and projects.

Dubai’s progress towards its smart city goals took centre stage as Smart Dubai recently participated in panel discussions at New York City’s Smart Cities NYC conference. Smart Dubai additionally came on board as strategic partner for Smart Cities NYC 2017, the first conference that tackles the intersection of technology and urban life.

Her Excellency Dr Aisha Bint Butti Bin Bishr, Director-General of the Smart Dubai Office; Younus Al Nasser, Assistant Director General of the Smart Dubai Office; and H.E. Wesam Lootah, CEO of Smart Dubai Government Establishment; and, took part in the event, where, in addition to the discussion panels, they attended a roundtable breakfast at the IBM Think Lab facility, hosted by the US-UAE Business Council and including senior executives from prominent US ICT and Infrastructure companies, and H.E. Majid Al-Suwaidi, Consul General of the UAE Consulate in New York. H.E. Al Nasser gave a presentation at the breakfast, following H.E. Dr Aisha’s introductory remarks.

H.E. Dr Aisha Bint Butti Bin Bishr said: “Smart Dubai is committed to adopting the most-cutting edge international innovations and practices when it comes to building the smart city, which supports our end goal of making Dubai the smartest and happiest city on the planet. We are equally passionate about sharing our successes and accomplishments with likeminded ambitious organisations and individuals around the world, in order to play our part in the development of the smart city as a concept – worldwide.”

“The Smart Cities NYC conference,” H.E. continued, “offers the ideal opportunity and platform for us to do so, seeing as it brings together international experts in smart city development, and creates synergy and momentum for the global smart city movement.”

H.E. Dr Aisha Bint Butti Bin Bishr took part in a panel discussion called “Transforming Cities Through Municipal Collaboration” , along with Samir Saimi, CIO of the City of Atlanta; and Archana Vemulapalli, CTO of the District of Columbia. The session was moderated by Miguel Gamino Jr, CTO of the City of New York.

H.E. Younus Al Nasser then took part in a panel discussion, titled “Does Bigger Data Mean Better Living?” , alongside Dan Koh, Chief of Staff at the Office of the Mayor of Boston; Patrick Decker, President and CEO at Xylem; and Dr Philippa Malmgren, Founder of DRPM Group and Co-Founder of H Robotics. The session delved into the implications of Big Data, which is set to reach into every aspect of economic and social life in the smart city: from employment to healthcare to policymaking. The panel looked specifically at urban governance processes that produce, utilise, exchange, and monitor contextual knowledge in relation to quality of life, economic development, and the city ecosystem.

H.E. Younus Al Nasser said: “Our participation in the conference represents a great step forward towards propelling Dubai to the fore of smart cities across the world, and highlighting its wide array of smart services and technological advancements. During the sessions, we were happy to learn that several major cities have indeed started to look to Dubai as an example in building the cities of the future. The UAE boasts a set of resources that qualifies it to compete on a global level, particularly the advanced developments constantly reshaping Dubai, which helps realise the city’s vision to become the smartest and happiest city on Earth.”

Meanwhile, H.E. Wesam Lootah took part in a panel discussion titled “Blockchain Means Business” , along with Muneeb Ali, Co-Founder of Blockstack; Jalak Jobanputra, Founder and Managing Partner at Future\Perfect Ventures; and Joshua Klein, Technologist and Hacker. The session explored Blockchain technology’s potential to disrupt multiple industries and create more democratic, secure, transparent, and efficient markets. The panellists cited the obvious advantages of distributed-ledger technology that have driven strong venture capital to the Blockchain, and discussed the new business models it can bring to smart cities, as well as the most concerning technical, legal, and regulatory hurdles it presents.

“The event provides an ideal opportunity for us to measure our successes against achievements made by our international counterparts in terms of smart city development,” H.E. Wesam Lootah explained. “Smart Dubai has a successful track record, launching several unprecedented initiatives, including our efforts to create the first Blockchain Government Global Standardisation system – which would make it the first of its kind anywhere in the world – as well as our strategy to become the first Blockchain-powered city by 2020. The conference offered us the opportunity to learn of the progress being made in the smart city industry around the world, and we were proud to see that, in many areas and sectors, Dubai is leading the charge with its bold and innovative initiatives and projects.”

The four-day event attracts millions of attendees from around the world, in addition to an impressive roster of high-profile speakers and international experts to tackle the most pressing issues facing the development of smart cities, propose solutions for them, and share insight, expertise, and success stories to develop standard best practices and effective frameworks for smart cities around the world.