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New Smart Cities Council Policy Brief Details How Smart Infrastructure Can Unlock Equity and Prosperity in Cities and Towns Across the U.S.

(Washington, D.C.) – September 28, 2016 – As the U.S. election season heats up and further attention is focused on key national priorities, the Smart Cities Council, the world’s largest smart cities network, released a policy brief detailing how smart infrastructure investments in cities and towns across America will create jobs and promote greater prosperity for all. The brief will be a point of focus today during a policy event at Smart Cities Week – North America’s premier smart cities conference, convening over 1,500 participants from all levels of government and the private sector in Washington, D.C.

The policy brief – Smart Infrastructure Unlocks Equity and Prosperity for Our Cities and Towns – outlines how smart infrastructure will create better paying jobs and usher in a new era of prosperity for all Americans. It defines smart infrastructure as infrastructure optimized with proven information and communications technologies (ICT) – sensors, software and all manner of Internet of Things devices that give infrastructure digital eyes and ears.

Unlocking barriers to adoption
It also outlines how elected officials and other policymakers can accelerate smart infrastructure investments by supporting a move to freshen dated policies and practices that impede progress.

For example, it recommends enabling cities, counties and towns to:

  • Develop the capacity to innovate
  • Aggregate demand
  • Streamline procurement
  • Embrace new financing models
  • Benchmark results

"Our mission is to help this genera­tion’s visionary leaders at all levels of government to see the promise of smart infrastructure in­vestments – and take action," said Smart Cities Council Managing Director Philip Bane. "Innovation and inclusion are key themes which all of us should be concerned about when it comes to the future of our nation – and our policy brief makes a strong case for why and how smart infrastructure enables both."

Increasing pressure on aging infrastructure
The policy brief suggests that nowhere is the need for investment more obvious than in urban centers where swell­ing populations are putting increasing pressure on aging infrastructure. It also emphasizes the importance of focusing on smaller cities, towns, counties and rural communities facing serious infrastructure challenges, food and water insecurities, shortage in jobs providing livable wages and inefficient processes and policies. Yet many are budget-constrained.

The policy brief, which was supported by Council Partners AT&T, Black & Veatch, Itron, Qualcomm Intelligent Solutions, Inc. and Sensus, includes specific examples of how smart infrastructure is already providing triple bottom line returns – social, financial and environmental benefits – in cities large and small in the U.S. and beyond.

The Executive Summary for Smart Infrastructure Unlocks Equity and Prosperity for Our Cities and Towns can be accessed here: http://smartcitiescouncil.com/resources/executive-summary-smart-infrastructure-unlocks-equity-and-prosperity-our-cities-and-towns.

To download the full policy brief, sign up on the Smart Cities Week website for free and access the document here: http://smartcitiescouncil.com/resources/smart-infrastructure-unlocks-equity-and-prosperity-our-cities-and-towns.

About the Smart Cities Council
Launched in 2012, the Smart Cities Council is the author of the internationally recognized Smart Cities Readiness Guide, which provides guiding principles and best practices for an integrated, cross-cutting smart city. The Readiness Guide was developed based on discussions with hundreds of cities and solution vendors, and has been applied all over the world. The Council is comprised of more than 120 partners and advisors who have generated $2.7 trillion in annual revenue and contributed to more than 11,000 smart cities projects. To learn more, visit www.smartcitiescouncil.com.