Data collection “crucial” in building smart and sustainable cities

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Experts in the real estate sector and urban development have described data collection as crucial to transforming communities.

During a panel discussion at BusinessWorld’s Virtual Economic Forum on Wednesday, they said some of the pressing issues right now are how data collection is organized and the lack of policies for it.

“Our problem is to organize the plethora of data that exists, so how do we organize it, how do we organize it and how do we deploy it in solutions that impact the livability of these places,” said Rafael Fernandez de Mesa, President of Lima Land, Inc. and Cebu Industrial Park Developers, Inc.

Mr. De Mesa is one of the panelists who discussed the topic “Building smart cities and sustainable communities” during the two-day forum.

David T. Leechiu, CEO of Leechiu Property Consultants, said some of the smart city technologies being built in the new townships include a storm detention center, night-lit streets, security and waste management.

“The simplest and probably the most urgent platforms would probably be about security, where facial recognition, CCTV cameras and the provision and integration of the private sector security system would be LGUs (local government units). ) “, said Mr. Leechiu. noted.

Experts described data as “a powerful commodity” to promote digital transformation in smart cities and to build sustainable communities.

“How we collect, store, analyze and use data for better decision making, whether for planning, service delivery or financial management is going to be crucial,” said Srinivas Sampath, Director of Urban Development and water. division of the Southeast Asia Regional Department of the Asian Development Bank.

“The way to achieve this would be to ensure that a sufficient security mechanism is in place for data integration, transparency,” he said, adding that privacy concerns regarding how whose data would be shared should also be addressed.

The government will play a “pivotal role” in working together to develop sustainable and smart cities and communities.

Enrico C. Paringit, director of the Department of Science and Technology (DoST), said one of the first things to deal with is key policies around data.

LGU data can be used to analyze and create projects and systems specific to each LGU, meeting the needs of their constituents and improving the services of each government unit. Each LGU would have different problems to solve and resources to deploy.

“The government, as a facilitator, can let the private sector bring the innovation, provide the technological solution, but in doing so, the private sector should also collaborate,” Sampath said.

Using data can also help local leaders make “informed decision-making” and “science-based planning,” Mr. Paringit said.

Collaboration between and among the private sector is also necessary to create systems for smart cities.

“We also need to standardize the data, the way you collect it, but you also need to be prepared to share it, because if you share it and we can improve as a whole, it will only benefit the whole. country, ”said De Mesa said. – Keren Concepcion G. Valmonte


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