Smart cities to benefit from new international standards task force

Global standards leaders IEC, ISO and ITU join forces to better serve cities of the future.

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The first meeting of a new joint task force to coordinate international standardization for smart cities was held last week to discuss global learnings from the COVID-19 crisis and highlight the scale and urgency of the challenge.

Cities, municipalities and local governments are at the forefront in coping with the COVID-19 crisis, and standards are an invaluable tool to support them, said ISO Secretary-General Sergio Mujica.

“IEC, ISO and ITU can offer global solutions to cities and their citizens that can be adapted to meet every community’s context and needs,” he said. “But we need to take accelerated common actions.”

The world population is expected to reach ten billion by 2050, with 80 % of people projected to live in cities. The COVID-19 pandemic has highlighted how, more than ever before, we need strong and cohesive cities and communities.

“Together, standards bodies have an opportunity to support recovery from the current crisis and to provide ways to ‘rethink cities’ once this pandemic is over. We share a huge opportunity, and a huge responsibility,” he added.

The IEC, ISO and ITU Smart Cities Task Force will reinforce the collaborative conversations that were initiated at the three World Smart City Forums held from 2016 to 2018. It will also engage stakeholders to identify standardization needs and provide leadership in guiding the ongoing collaboration of the broader standardization ecosystem.

IEC General Secretary Philippe Metzger said: “Only truly smart cities will be able to leverage technologies and data, facilitated by international standards, to cope with the momentous challenges we face today, ranging from the long-term impact of climate change to the COVID-19 pandemic.”

The Joint Task Force builds on IEC, ISO and ITU’s long-standing commitment to coordinated standards development. It represents an integrated response to the United Nations’ Sustainable Development Goal 11, designed to “make cities inclusive, safe, resilient and sustainable” by 2030.

Chaesub Lee, Director of the ITU Telecommunication Standardization Bureau, added: “Digital transformation is accelerating, industries are converging and we see an associated convergence in the responsibilities of different regulators – we see why the Sustainable Development Goals emphasize the importance of new partnerships.”

IEC, ISO and ITU together form the “World Standards Cooperation”. This strategic alliance leads the celebration of World Standards Day on 14 October, which pays tribute to the collaborative work of standards experts worldwide.

Find out about the upcoming World Standards Day 2020: “Protecting the planet with standards”.

Learn more about smart cities and standardization.

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