Dubai - Becoming a Smart City

7th Jul, 2016
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Building up a knowledge economy and reducing their reliance on oil and gas is one of the aims for the UAE, as they embark on a journey and start investing heavily in ICT. In Dubai, the Dubai Smart City initiative has been launched to transform the emirate into a leading global smart city over the next few years.

Text Rémi Dévé

The ability to manage rapid urbanization is critical. Cities must increase the efficiency of existing and new infrastructure and services to a level never previously achieved. This requires a step change in the integration of infrastructure management and operations. Today, the quality of life of city residents is influenced by the degree of smartness and user-friendliness of the various services that a city provides. Technology plays a major role in achieving this smartness and efficiency.

Higher Quality of Life

Jumeirah Emirates TowersAs smartphones become more ubiquitous and technology rapidly changes one’s lives, Dubai is marching towards the next level of improvement and embracing a higher quality of life. The smart city project has been conceptualized under the leadership of His Highness Shaikh Mohammad bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Vice-President and Prime Minister of the UAE and Ruler of Dubai, and Sheikh Hamdan bin Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Crown Prince of Dubai and General Supervisor of the Dubai smart city project.

Dubai’s smart city strategy includes over 100 initiatives and a plan to transform 1,000 government services into smart services. The project aims to encourage collaboration between the public and private sectors to achieve targets in six ‘smart’ focus areas: smart life, smart transportation, smart society, smart economy, smart governance and smart environment. The strategy relies on three basic principles: communication, integration and cooperation.

Unprecedented Partnership

His Highness Sheikh Mohammedbin Rashid Al Maktoum, Vice-President and Prime Minister of the UAE and Ruler of Dubai put it like this: “Our country is today ushering into a new era for the improvement and development of quality of life through this gigantic project which got underway through an unprecedented public-private partnership to make a new reality for all and change the concept of city which the human being lives in so as to live with him through his smart phone and who will be its key pivot.”

Dubai’s initiatives will embrace innovation, and make the city more efficient, seamless, safe, as well as it will deliver an enriched city experience through smart technology.  Everything will be brought together on a single connected, integrated and collaborative smart city platform, with input from the government agencies, businesses and Dubai’s citizens.

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