Building inclusive smart communities in developing countries | Infrastructure news

Researchers from the Council for Scientific and Industrial Research (CSIR), as well as various South African universities, will unveil a book titled: Approaches to building a smart community: An exploration through the concept of the digital village on Saturday, 17 September 2022 at the CSIR International Convention Centre (ICC) in Pretoria.

Commissioned by Siyabuswa Educational Improvement and Development Trust (SEIDET), South African researchers came together to develop a handbook that provides practical approaches to building smart communities for underdeveloped and information-deprived communities in developing countries.

“The concept of smart cities is a global phenomenon, which has been explored in academic literature and even implemented by several countries around the world. However, the idea of smart communities has not yet been substantially explored, particularly in the context of underdeveloped countries, which are still predominately rural. Therefore, through this book, researchers from different parts of South Africa have made unique recommendations informed by years of academic work, direct involvement in community development through the use ICT, as well as architectural and engineering-type experimental development work,” says Editor and CSIR Chief Researcher in Information and Cybersecurity, Dr Jackie Phahlamohlaka.

At the advent of the fourth industrial revolution, there has been a strong drive towards the establishment of smart cities, which essentially refers to reconfiguring urban areas into modern spaces that utilise different types of electronic methods and sensors to efficiently collect data, manage assets, resources, and services.

A smart community, on the other hand, advocates for building an interconnected community that leverages smart technologies to benefit citizens, businesses and service organisations for economic growth, social benefits, and environmental sustainability.

As a guide to building effective and inclusive smart communities, the book features 10 different chapters on topics ranging from Entrepreneurship training: The birth of the digital village concept; Digital ecosystems; to Smart infrastructure as the basis of a smart community.

Each of the chapters appearing in the book have been authored by 12 researchers and a representative for each chapter will be given an opportunity to provide a brief overview at the launch.

“The book is expected to help communities around the globe find a suitable approach proposed in the book to try out for themselves, and by doing so, find something that positively contributes to the quality of lives of people in those communities,” added Phahlamohlaka.

Event details for the book launch are as follows:

Date: Saturday, 17 September 2022

Time: 17:30


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