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Taiwan's Smart City Summit thrives online

The months-long, online edition of canceled Smart City Summit and Expo showcases over 350 smart city solutions

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A Smart City Online awards event attended by Vice President Lai Ching-te (center). 

A Smart City Online awards event attended by Vice President Lai Ching-te (center).  (CNA photo)

TAIPEI (Taiwan News) — An important online event got underway in Taipei on July 1 to connect political and business leaders from cities worldwide and envision a post-pandemic future that sustains the growth of cities and the health of its people.

Smart City Online is a months-long, online edition of the canceled Smart City Summit and Expo (SCSE), which is the largest of its kind in Asia. It pioneers over 350 smart city solutions in 19 themed cyber "pavilions."

Many of of the exhibits are designed to address the challenges of post-pandemic life. The event has facilitated 200 business matchmaking online events and 17 online forums, including a Mayors' Summit in August. Over 200,000 views from 118 countries and regions have been recorded so far for the major online event.

In August, a Mayors' Summit gathered 20 city mayors and representatives from 17 countries for a live-edit video conference, using state-of-the-art audiovisual applications and video conferencing tools. Oversea participants used Webex, Cisco’s video conferencing system, to connect to the cloud host server.

On behalf of Taipei City Mayor Ko Wen-je (柯文哲), Deputy Mayor Huang Shan-shan (黃珊珊) and Commissioner of the Mayor's Office for External Affairs Tom Chou participated in the summit. Mayor Ko also shared his epidemic prevention strategy, discussing how smart technologies could be used to contain the spread of the disease.

Ko talked about how the coronavirus crisis has accelerated the digital transformation of the city government and private companies. Efforts include the installation of face mask vending machines as well as promoting remote learning and telecommuting.

Mayor Zdeněk Hřib of Prague, joining a delegation led by Czech Senate President Milos Vystrcil, also took part in the Mayors' Summit on Aug. 13. He said that smart technologies play a vital role in tackling the pandemic.

Paul Peng (彭雙浪), chairman of the Taipei Computer Association (TCA) said on Tuesday (Sept. 2) that Smart City Online is planning to display online more than 1,000 smart city solutions from 500 companies worldwide, up until the end of the year. Sixty professional forums and 800 business matchmaking events are set to be run online during this time.

The three main events coming up in September are the World Telecom Smart City Conference, and World System Integrator Conference, Peng said. "This year, we have high hopes of adopting 5G for various smart city solutions, in light of Taiwan's ICT strengths and the launch of 5G commercial services in the country."