Edmonton Wins in IBM “Smarter Cities Challenge”
March 09, 2011
IBM names Edmonton as first Canadian city in program that recognizes innovative use of technology
Edmonton is among the smartest cities in the world when it comes to the innovative use of information technology to benefit citizens. Technology giant IBM has named Edmonton as the first Canadian city – and one of just 24 worldwide – to receive an IBM Smarter Cities Challenge grant of up to US$400,000.
The grants provide winning cities access to IBM's top experts to analyze and recommend ways to support successful growth, better delivery of municipal services, more citizen engagement, and improved efficiency through the creative use of information technology. IBM specialists will work closely with City staff on strategic projects.
“We are proud to be recognized by a respected global corporation as a smarter city, among a handful in the world,” says Edmonton Mayor Stephen Mandel. “This recognition shows Edmonton is becoming known as one of the best cities anywhere for technological leadership, and we are positioned for even greater things.”
Edmonton City Manager Simon Farbrother agrees, adding: “We are an ideal candidate for the IBM program, based on the leadership and momentum we have developed toward new and innovative ways of managing our City, for the benefit of all our citizens. The recognition – and the technological support that winning provides – helps our efforts to transform Edmonton to achieve our vision of an increasingly vibrant, innovative, inclusive and sustainable city.”
Two hundred cities around the world applied for the Smarter Cities Challenge, and the winners include: Chengdu, China; Delhi, India; Glasgow, UK; New Orleans, LA; Nice, France; and Rio de Janeiro, Brazil, among others.
IBM selected cities that made the strongest case for participating in the Smarter Cities Challenge.
"These cities are eager to implement programs that tangibly improve the quality of life in their areas, and to create roadmaps for other cities to follow,” said Stanley S. Litow, IBM vice president of Corporate Citizenship & Corporate Affairs, and President of IBM's Foundation. “We're excited to help cities tackle the most pressing challenges of our time."
The IBM Smarter Cities Challenge is a competitive grant program in which IBM is awarding a total of $50 million worth of technology and services to 100 municipalities worldwide over the next three years.