“Intelligent Community of the Year” Will Decide the Most Promising Place to Live

by Jay E. Gillette and Greg Needham, Digital Policy Institute

Voting is underway by the international Jury of the Intelligent Community Forum (ICF) for the prestigious “Intelligent Community of the Year” for 2014. The winner will be announced at the New York-based ICF’s Summit 2014, hosted at NYU Poly University in Brooklyn, June 3 – 5, 2014.

Last year’s advanced city was from Asia. See “Smart City Winner: Taichung City, Taiwan 2013 Intelligent Community Award goes to city offering free broadband, free Wi-Fi hotspots.

Seven communities are 2014 finalists, from about 360 applicants worldwide. Communities are rated on the following Intelligent Community Indicators, criteria annually specified, as follows:

1.Broadband Connectivity;

2. Knowledge Workforce;

3. Innovation;

4. Digital Inclusion;

5. Marketing and Advocacy.

Each year there is a special added “theme” in the competition, for example, “health care,” or “sustainability.” For the 2014 event, the ICF says:

“The 2014 theme, ‘Community as Canvas,’ looks at three specific aspects of culture: as art and craftwork that has both economic and social value, as heritage that gives a place its identity, and as attitudes arising from that heritage that determine how people react to change.”

From the ICF website, here are the finalists for 2014:

  • Arlington County, Virginia, USA, which is building its own fiber network to boost broadband service and re-energize government-business-university collaboration
  • Columbus, Ohio, USA, which in its recovery from the 2008 recession has 20,000 more jobs than it did at its last economic peak in 2007
  • Hsinchu City, Taiwan, the first city in Taiwan to implement e-learning platforms for its students and establish a science park
  • Kingston, Ontario, Canada, which leveraged its educational institutions to build an innovation economy focused on environmental sustainability
  • New Taipei City, Taiwan, a new city forged from communities surrounding the nation’s capital, which is creating a unified and dynamic knowledge economy
  • Toronto, Ontario, Canada, with a renowned waterfront development that will provide Internet at 500 times the speed of conventional residential networks
  • Winnipeg, Manitoba, Canada, where reinvention of its agricultural legacy is creating strong growth while preserving a valued heritage

Digital Policy Institute salutes these leading-edge communities, and wish them all the best of luck for the honor. They have already won, just by being in the running. They are the communities of the future, with a future.