The City of Kelowna has been recognized as one the 21 smartest cities in the world when it comes to its approach to investment in technology to address community goals.
The Intelligent Community Forum’s Smart 21 Communities for 2018 put the city on a list that includes cites in France, Finland, Taiwan and Australia, said Mayor Coin Basran.
The Smart 21 represents the best models of economic, social and cultural development in the digital age, in the judgment of the ICF and its team of independent analysts.
“Being named a Smart 21 community is global recognition that the city, its citizens and businesses are all playing a part in moving Kelowna forward as an innovation-based community,” said Basran.
“We look forward to the next phase of the awards program and will use the Smart 21 to continue to market opportunities that exist in the region for innovators.”
Basran said the Smart 21 rankings were based on six categories—broadband availability, innovation, development of a knowledge workforce, digital equality, sustainability and advocacy.
He said the city was recognized for its deployment of a “dark” fibre network, its climate action plan, the Okanagan Centre for Innovation, the Okanagan Young Professionals Collective, the Imagine Kelowna campaign and the city’s Open Data Information service on its kelowna.ca website.
Kelowna was one of 400 cities around the world considered for the Smart 21.
The city will now submit a more detailed description of the opportunities and challenges here, as well as the results of local innovation as it tries to move into the top 7 of the ICF Intelligent Communities of the Year program.
The eventual winner of the 2018 Intelligent Community of the Year will be announced next June at a gala in London, England.