NXN has featured in the comments Dr Aisha Bin Bishr of Smart Dubai has made to Telecom Review in a recent article. Also featured are some of the critical programs NXN is involved in with Smart Dubai:

Dr Aisha Bin Bishr (Source: Telecom Review)

How do you re-create a city, and not just any city, but one known the world over for being an oasis of record breaking endeavors and technological progress and innovation? That is the task in front of Dr Aisha Bin Bishr, deputy director general of the Smart Dubai Executive Committee.

“There are a few elements missing,” says Dr Aisha, “but consider what we do have. We have very smart transport and energy systems including the metro which is one of the largest driverless transportation systems in the world. In addition, we began the move to mGovernment in 2002-2003 and all the entities, at least internally, are fully automated. Also, 97 percent of the land in Dubai is covered by fiber, so we have reached a very high level in terms of ICT maturity.”

However, technology is just a tool though,” she says. “Our vision for the smart city is about making Dubai the happiest city in the world.” Dr Aisha adds, “There isn’t any one city in the world that claims to have checked all the boxes of being smart.”

So how will Dubai become happy and smart? It’s all about the definitions explains Dr Aisha. As we talk about roadmaps and progress, Dr Aisha explains how one of the first tasks her committee undertook was benchmarking Dubai against the 10 smartest cities in the world and found that none of them checked all the boxes which would make a city truly smart.

Partnering with NXN, a specialized advisory and consulting group, the smart committee then developed a framework which incorporated all that they saw in other cities of the world and the key areas of development which they believed were essential to truly being smart: economy, living, mobility, environment, governance and people.

All this is part of the plan to further enhance the Dubai model which Dr Aisha hopes will be a blueprint for other cities in the world that aim to become smart in the future. “What we do is develop a guideline about how to be a smart district and connect to other parts of the city in terms of data interaction. For instance, we are building a data orchestration layer which will allow everyone to utilize data from the city, based on open data policies. So you don’t need to create your own layer, but just create your services on top of this data. No other city in the world works this way.”

Using a strategic partner process, the smart Dubai executive committee is now identifying telecom operators and strategic vendor partners for the implementation of the blueprint. These partners are being asked to see Dubai as the pilot grounds to test any new technologies they are developing. Dr Aisha believes Dubai has an edge over all other cities in this regard as it has none of the tech related rules and regulations many big companies struggle with in other parts of the world making it a more welcoming environment in this regard. “We also have a keen interest in what our vision of a smart city is and our speed of execution conveys our intent.”


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