As your partner, we would love to work by your side to help you pick up speed. That is why each two months, we open up our doors in Ghent and act as a sounding board for some of our customers regarding the challenges they share with us from their own professional lives. Furthermore, a whole host of Innovation Thursdays have again been scheduled in our calendar for 2020. If you would like to be kept informed, just let us know!
Getting smarter is a must
Cities and towns always need to find ways to work more efficiently and at lower cost. They also need to reflect on things such as their aging populations, the trends in the housing market and the whole question of mobility. To provide a sustainable response to these challenges, we need to make progress in the areas of information gathering, organization and services. The ultimate goal is to provide residents with a pleasant living environment.
In 2007, the term "smart city" was coined and registered by Prof. Rudolf Giffinger. The search for greater efficiency can be achieved by revisiting the processes and infrastructure in six social domains (quality of life, environment, governance, economy, transport and society). Investments in human and social capital, sustainable economic growth, improving living standards and sensible management of natural resources are core elements. This can all become reality under the guidance of authorities who play their part. An ideal scenario that seems to be way off in the distance? During our inspiration session we planted some signposts that point the way to a smart city.
Smart city projects are often set up by multiple cities, at a provincial level or even by the Flemish Government. Collaboration offers a number of economies of scale. It is then also possible to work with larger organizations. For specific problem areas, at the level of a region or Flanders itself, they want to carry out projects and are looking for partners who can help dream up and define solutions. Initiatives like this also exist at European level. By getting into this kind of co-creative mode, a lot of knowledge and resources can be pooled. Realdolmen is an active contributor in this regard as an active member of umbrella organizations such as Smart City Vlaanderen, Mobilidata and De Blauwe Cluster.
Be sure to take a look at your opportunities for public subsidies. The Flemish Government is budgeting funds (€4 million in both 2018 and 2019) to give every Flemish city and town – large and small – the opportunity of starting to work smartly using smart city applications. We would be happy to assist you with the process of preparing your project proposal for the authorities.