Dubai / WAM
Smart Dubai has begun preparations for its pavilion at the upcoming Gitex Technology Week 2018, set to be held at the Dubai World Trade Centre from October 14-18, where it plans to showcase the strategies, services and initiatives that have made Dubai a world leader in the smart city sector.
The Smart Dubai Office, SDO, is collaborating with 59 Government entities and private companies in Dubai, which will be joining the exhibition under the SDO umbrella and showcasing ground-breaking smart government services that spread happiness among Dubai’s citizens, residents and visitors.
SDO Director-General, Dr Aisha Bint Butti Bin Bishr, said, “GITEX Technology Week has established itself as a leading annual technology event shedding light on ground-breaking developments, and drawing smart-city experts and influential decision-makers from all around the world.”
“We, at Smart Dubai, believe that a smart city transformation is only effective when it touches every aspect of people’s lives and with that in mind, it is a constant priority for us to collaborate with public and private entities to improve the smart-city experience of Dubai’s citizens, residents and visitors,” Dr Aisha added. “This commitment is reflected in the Smart Dubai pavilion, where our various partners have joined us to take part in this world-leading event.”
Smart Dubai will also be displaying its Happiness Agenda for Gitex visitors. The agenda seeks to measure and improve people’s happiness. Smart Dubai aims, above all, to use technology to spread happiness among the population. Having raised the city’s score on the Happiness Index to 89 percent in 2017, SDO is now aiming for an ambitious 95 percent by 2021 and has deployed Happiness Meters across government entities and service centres to measure customers’ happiness.
The foundation of all emerging technologies that power a smart city is data. With that in mind, the Smart Dubai Office has rolled out a series of initiatives to improve the capture and analysis of city-wide data, to help better decision-making and to upgrade the services to meet the needs of the community. The Dubai Data Establishment, an entity within the Smart Dubai Office, was formed to carry out the Dubai Data Initiative to support the city-wide smart transformation.
This year, Dubai Data announced the fourth “Dubai Data Compliance Course”, in collaboration with the Mohammed Bin Rashid School of Government, MBRSG, to meet the requirements of all participating entities. Dubai Data also launched the Data Champions programme, which enlists representatives from 40 government entities in Dubai, who offer guidance for decision-making and implementing the latest data technologies.
In 2017, a Smart Dubai-commissioned report titled the Dubai Data Economic Impact Report provided the Dubai Government with insights into the potential economic impacts of opening and sharing data. A notable initiative in that direction is the Dubai Pulse platform – the digital backbone of the city – which compiles open and shared data from both the public and private sectors and publishes up-to-date information about various city metrics.
The Crowd Management Project, launched as the first technical project under the IoT Strategy, can predict sporadic bursts of crowds in a particular place, alerting relevant authorities to ensure the safety and security of people.
Smart Dubai gradually rolled out 137 initiatives and 1,129 smart services that give the city’s inhabitants access to its cutting-edge facilities using smart, interconnected systems. These include services using the advanced Government Resources Planning Systems, GRPS. This is an integrated system of centralised technical solutions allowing government agencies in Dubai to handle all key internal government operations in financial, logistics and human resources.
Smart Dubai released the first report on the compliance of government entities with the Dubai Data Policies during 2017, where the Roads and Transport Authority, Dubai Electricity and Water Authority, and the Department of Tourism and Commerce Marketing came out on top.
Smart Dubai also launched the new and improved version of its flagship Dubai Now platform and application integrating AI-powered smart city advisor “Rashid” into it. Smart Dubai had rebranded “Saad” as “Rashid” in October 2017 after the late Sheikh Rashid bin Saeed Al Maktoum, pioneer of Dubai’s renaissance. Dubai Now is also available as an online portal, providing round-the-clock government services, and includes a feature providing government agencies with the tools their teams need to design, develop and launch smart services. The Dubai Now portal also boasts a seamless user interface, provides guidance and sets alerts to remind Dubai residents not to miss any deadlines or payments.
That same month, His Highness Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Vice President, Prime Minister and Ruler of Dubai, announced, from Smart Dubai’s headquarters, the flagship Data Wealth Initiative to safeguard the emirate’s digital wealth, engage government departments in smart transformation, and drive the transition to a 100 percent paperless government. He also launched the Dubai Digital Certificates for outstanding government and private entities and the Dubai IoT Strategy to build the world’s most advanced Internet of Things (IoT) ecosystem.
The Dubai Blockchain Strategy, launched in October 2016, seeks to make the Dubai Government the first in the world to conduct 100 percent of its transactions via an online encrypted database by the year 2020. Since the launch, Smart Dubai has worked with government and private sector entities and identified over 20 use cases that are currently in the Proof of Concept phase and will be implemented in the city in the coming years.
One of the use cases launched in September is the Payment Reconciliation and Settlement System, developed in collaboration with the Dubai Department of Finance as a Blockchain-powered upgrade to its financial system. The new system allows transactions to be performed accurately and instantly, economising time and effort.
Building on that, the Dubai Paperless Strategy was launched to ensure that the government completely foregoes paper transaction by 2021, expediting the transition of internal and external (customer) transactions across government entities to 100 percent digital. Smart Dubai is working to complete Phase 1 of the Dubai Paperless Strategy by end of 2018. The completion of the first phase will include a full scan of all paperwork across six government entities on three levels: Internal documents between departments of a single entity; paperwork issued at customer service departments; and paperwork brought in by the customers themselves.
GRP-powered services include the Smart Employee application, which brings together more than 53 government bodies and benefitting more than 26,300 staff members. The Dubai Careers platform, meanwhile, counts 38 government entities among its members, offering 1,100 employment opportunities to 98,800 job seekers.
In addition, the Smart City Academy, which was announced for the Dubai 10X Initiative, will be the world’s first Blockchain-powered open education platform. It allows users to select from a range of digital certifications and proceed to gain credit in these diplomas from multiple unconventional learning channels such as work projects, reading materials, conferences, workshops, online channels and more.