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Cambridge Centre for Smart Infrastructure and Construction

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Read the latest Smart Infrastructure Blog ‘Digitalisation and smart cities: Identifying and addressing competency needs for the future’ which is now published.

Written by CSIC Research Associate Dr Kwadwo Oti-Sarpong, member of the CSIC Digital Cities for Change team, and published ahead of the Smart City Expo World Congress taking place in Barcelona later this month, the blog considers the global growth of smart city projects and the need for specific competencies to ensure the delivery of public value.

Recognising the importance of addressing this need, the Digital Cities for Change (DC2) team at CSIC is developing an interdisciplinary postgraduate educational programme at Postgraduate Certificate, Diploma, and Masters’ levels. This course is designed as a flagship programme bringing focus to urban digital innovations, addressing the competency gaps and preparing the next level and future generation of built environment professionals involved in the delivery of digital innovations in cities. Dr Kwadwo Oti-Sarpong, CSIC Digital Cities for Change

The blog highlights the global growth of smart city projects and national funding awarded to a number of UK city governments. The funding enables local authorities to deploy smart city projects with their development partners featuring the use of digital technologies and data to improve places by providing citizens with social, economic, and environmental benefits.

Dr Oti-Sarpong, who is part of the CSIC Digital Cities for Change team leading a workshop at the Smart City Expo World Congress on 17 November (read more details and register at Eventbrite here), brings focus to a number of challenges associated with deploying digital technologies to address urban problems: “As well as identifying and deploying the context-appropriate array of sensors, data collection, integration dashboards and digital twin models, the process of creating public value must be addressed. Importantly, the ability to create any form of public value in a place requires city governments and their professional delivery partners to possess the capabilities to effectively integrate the use of such technologies into existing city governance and management structures – and anticipate and address ethical and responsible innovation concerns that would arise, such as the privacy of citizen data and the potential further exclusion of marginalised minorities.”

Bringing attention to the need for the development of specific competencies among built environment professionals working on digital initiatives to manage the mix of technology, governance and management, and ethical/responsible innovation dimensions which combine to shape outcomes and deliver public value, Dr Oti-Sarpong writes: “Recognising the importance of addressing this need, the Digital Cities for Change (DC2) team at CSIC is developing an interdisciplinary postgraduate educational programme at Postgraduate Certificate, Diploma, and Masters’ levels. This course is designed as a flagship programme bringing focus to urban digital innovations, addressing the competency gaps and preparing the next level and future generation of built environment professionals involved in the delivery of digital innovations in cities. It will provide new thinking on how to develop competencies to effectively plan, design and implement smart city projects aimed at delivering context-specific public value.”

• Read the CSIC Smart Infrastructure Blog by Dr Oti-Sarpong here.

• The CSIC Digital Cities for Change team will be hosting the workshop ‘Leadership for Responsible Urban Digital Innovation’ at the Smart City Expo World Congress in Barcelona on 17 November from 14:45-16:45 CET. The workshop is designed to show participants the knowledge needed to address competency-related challenges for the successful delivery of public value through urban digitalisation initiatives. It will be led by the Digital Cities for Change (DC2) team, Dr Jennifer Schooling OBE, Director of CSIC, and CSIC Research Associates Dr Kwadwo Oti-Sarpong and Dr Viviana Bastidas. Registration is open through the Eventbrite page which is now live.

• If you would like to receive more information about the interdisciplinary postgraduate course, send an email to ko363@cam.ac.uk with the subject line: “DC2 Postgraduate Course”.

 

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