ASCA calls for multi-government national smart communities initiative in 2018

The Australian Smart Communities Association (ASCA) has called for multilevel government cooperation to help make Australia a world leader in the smart use of technology to improve our cities and communities.

Recently appointed CEO Laurie Patton believes the time has come for federal, state and local governments to work together on a national strategy to ensure every community, large or small, experiences the benefits of an international movement to create so-called smart cities.

“We are well on the way, with Melbourne named 2017 Intelligent Community of the Year and Ipswich in the global top seven (2017 and 2015) - while Adelaide, Sunshine Coast and Ipswich are the Smart21 Communities of 2018 - announced by the New York based Intelligent Communities Forum, yet there are many places where the work is yet to begin,” Mr Patton said.

ASCA is the NFP peak body representing people and organisations spearheading moves to make our communities more liveable, more sustainable and more technologically empowered. Its members and partners include governments, businesses, universities and passionate individuals. 

“ASCA recognises the importance of putting people first – and viewing things from a local perspective while also drawing on international experience,” Mr Patton said.

“It's about better using technology to make a community smarter while improving its residents’ quality of life.”

ASCA was originally created as the Broadband Alliance by people primarily involved in local government who saw great opportunities in an emerging digitally-enabled world. 

“We need every level of government to embrace the smart use of technology to deal with increasing congestion, environmental issues and the many other constraints that are causing people to question the state of modern city living,” Mr Patton said.

“Smart lighting systems that reduce our power needs, smart parking systems, intelligent traffic monitoring, connected garbage bins that alert councils when they’re full. These are just some of the solutions already being deployed around the world.”

The Australian Smart Communities Conference, which will be the largest conference for smart city and communities practitioners in the Southern Hemisphere, will be held in Melbourne from 9-11 May, 2018.