Editor’s Note: Today we continue a series of video stories about City of Edmonton employees. In their own words. But, first, just a few more of ours. Together, the 14,000 people who work for the City help to imagine, construct, maintain, operate, and animate this place called Edmonton—where we have all decided to build, together, the value of of our lives.
This is our story. This is the story of the Smart Cities Challenge Phase One team.
Last year, Infrastructure Canada’s Smart Cities Challenge invited communities across the country to develop creative and innovative ways to use partnerships, data and technology to do what partnerships, data and technology should do: improve people’s lives. And they added a prize of $50 million to spark community participation, no matter how many people the community served.
The City of Edmonton’s Smart Cities Challenge team built its proposal around health. The team consulted thousands of residents, stakeholders and community partners on how to improve Edmontonians’ health and well-being, whether physical, mental, economic or social, using data and connected technologies.
The proposal outlined Edmonton’s ability to lead the transformation of health care in Canada through the use of municipal-level interventions and a focus on building a more connected city. By connecting people with organizations and solutions to help meet their health needs at a local level, stress would be taken off the greater health care system and a greater sense of community could be built among Edmonton residents.
“This is an incredible opportunity for the City of Edmonton to continue to showcase our role as a global leader in innovation and technology,” says Soumya Ghosh, Director of Digital Enablement in the Open City and Technology Branch.
“Through the development of a dynamic municipal program, we will work collaboratively with residents and partners to learn about the challenges our city is facing and work together to solve them.”
The City’s proposal is now one of five finalists for the top prize money. A final submission is due in March 2019. A winner is to be announced later this spring.
The whirlwind work to date has already gotten the City’s story out there. There has been national media coverage of the team’s vision—and local praise.
“Edmonton isn’t just a city of innovation and invention,” says Reg Joseph, CEO of Health City, a non-profit organization dedicated to accelerating health innovation in the Edmonton region.
“It provides a supportive ecosystem that empowers ideas into action. . We fully support the City of Edmonton in its effort to facilitate Edmonton’s Smart Cities Challenge proposal development and implementation. We believe that cities play a vital role in helping community health prosper.”
Thank you to all of the team members, past and present, community members and all City staff who contributed to this project.
For more information on the project, visit: smartcities.edmonton.ca