The Intelligent Community Forum (ICF) announced its list of the Top Seven Intelligent Communities of the Year, each a model for economic development in the 21st Century. The Top Seven announcement is the second stage of ICF’s annual Intelligent Community awards cycle.
The Top Seven were selected, based on analysis by a team of academic researchers, from among the Smart21 Communities of the Year, a group of semi-finalists named by ICF on November 18, 2006. The analysis based on a list of Intelligent Community Indicators that provide the first global framework for understanding how communities and regions can gain a competitive edge in today’s Broadband Economy. The Indicators demonstrate that being an Intelligent Community takes more than “being wired.’ It takes a combination of:
- Significant deployment of broadband communications to businesses, government facilities and residences, with government providing a catalyst when necessary through regulation, incentives and even network construction.
- Effective education, training and workforce development that builds a labour force able to perform “knowledge work.’
- Government and private-sector programs that promote digital inclusion to ensure that all sectors of society benefit from the broadband revolution and by expanding citizen participation in government decision-making.
- Innovation in the public and private sectors, ranging from e-government initiatives and efforts to create economic “clusters’ to the formation of risk capital to fund the development of new businesses, which are the engine of economic growth.
- Effective economic development marketing that leverages the community’ s broadband, labour and other assets to attract new employers.
The Top Seven have been chosen, not because they excel in all of these areas, but because each demonstrates excellence in at least one.
The top seven of the year 2007 are:
- Dundee, Scotland, United Kingdom
- Gangnam District, Seoul, South Korea
- Issy-les-Moulineaux, France
- Ottawa-Gatineau, Ontario-Quebec, Canada
- Sunderland, Tyne & Wear, United Kingdom
- Waterloo, Ontario, Canada
On May 18, one of the Top Seven will be named 2007’s Intelligent Community of the Year during ICF’s Building the Broadband Economy annual conference in New York City.