Increased urbanisation, worldwide globalisation, ecological requirements, and higher expectations of citizens’ quality of life require new and innovative approaches towards smarter cities. Smart cities – the theme of the EUREKA Innovation Week 2016 - are places where the traditional infrastructures, services and networks are improved and made more efficient and sustainable with the help of innovative technologies. ICT and Internet of Things (IoT) devices play a crucial part for achieving the Smart City visions and goals.
Mayor of Montréal Denis Coderre, who was a keynote speaker at the Canada – EUREKA Smart Cities Partnering Event on April 26, stressed the important role of cities in sustainable innovation: “While cities by nature affect the environment, they are also well placed to work on effective solutions on climate change and sustainability”. He added that “smart cities are the needed link to change our governance model, and a community like EUREKA clearly is part of the solution”.
EUREKA, with its thematic Clusters, is an ideal platform to facilitate innovative projects for Smart Cities, involving a strong industrial participation comprising large companies and SMEs as well as research institutions and public organisations. In a memorandum of understanding, the inter-Cluster initiative on Smart Cities urges EUREKA member countries to support Smart City-related projects with a potential of €2 billion by 2020.
"Cities are now part of the development and deployment of those smart cities solutions, and we will certainly work directly in projects with more and more cities in the years to come", said Jacques Magen, Chairman of the EUREKA Cluster Celtic-plus.
One of the projects present in the exhibition hall was SITAC, supported through the EUREKA Software-intensive Systems & Services Cluster ITEA 3. "SITAC enables any person to share information coming from his/her IoT devices with a chosen community or individuals, to create and share own services and applications by compositions of other existing ones and to be able to change the sharing instantly while being confident in a chosen level of security & privacy", explains project leader Ilan Mahalal. The project, completed in November 2015, was a great success. "We were 18 members from 5 countries with 4 industrials, 8 SMEs and 6 academics. This gave a perfect blend of competencies, ideas and contributions", Mahalal added.
An inter-cluster session and various thematic Cluster meetings will take place during the Innovation Week on April 29 and April 30. Further information and programmes.