The 3rd edition of the Abu Dhabi Smart City Summit (ADSCS) launched is first day of activities today under the name of “Smart Cities for a Sustainable World”. The summit is organised by The Department of Municipalities and Transport (DMT) in Abu Dhabi between 31 October and 1 November, 2023.
Taking place at the Conrad Abu Dhabi Etihad Towers Hotel, the prestigious two-day event is considered to be the region's most prominent smart city development gathering, bringing together a diverse array of experts, government officials, industry leaders, strategists, and decision-makers from both public and private sectors. Its primary objective is to promote insightful discussions on the best practices and challenges related to the development of smart cities.
With the central theme "Smart Cities for a Sustainable World," this year's summit focuses on how smart city technologies can solve some of the world's most pressing challenges, including climate change, urbanisation, and inequality. Moreover, Smart city technologies was explored as innovative solutions that can tackle pressing global issues, especially in the field of sustainability and climate.
The summit also serves as a promoter of innovation and progress in smart cities and AI. It brings together global and local leaders, decision-makers, and private sector companies in the UAE's capital. This exceptional platform further fosters idea exchange, collaboration, and boosts Abu Dhabi's global leadership in smart cities and AI. Topics discussed will revolve around the latest global applications and practices in the domain of smart and sustainable cities, including smart mobility, smart energy, smart buildings, and healthcare.
A highlight of the summit was the unveiling of Hyundai UAE's revolutionary innovation, the Hyundai Sonata Smart Taxi. This groundbreaking vehicle is equipped with advanced AI technology and streaming services, designed to elevate safety, operational efficiency, and the overall customer experience.
DMT is partnering with two major city service and technology providers, namely e&, and Huawei, to enhance smart city projects, implement AI solutions, and capitalise on the latest technology trends in smart city development. Additionally, the summit witnessed the signing of several Memorandums of Understanding (MoUs) between DMT and key entities such as Huawei and Etisalat, reinforcing their dedication to collaborative efforts and technological progress.
Another significant milestone event will involve the presentation of several key projects relevant to smart cities in Abu Dhabi. These projects encompass the Smart City Platform, which leverages artificial intelligence technologies to enhance city decision-making, smart parks designed to enhance the quality of life and improve city service efficiency through sustainable Internet of Things (IoT) devices, and Hala Wifi, a free Wi-Fi service jointly provided by the Department of Municipalities and Transport (DMT) in collaboration with UAE service providers. The service’s aim is to stregnthen the UAE's digital infrastructure and provide extensive public Wi-Fi coverage across the emirate, encompassing locations such as public parks (19 in Abu Dhabi, 11 in Al Ain, and 14 in Al Dhafra), as well as beaches (Abu Dhabi Cornich Beach and Al Bateen Beach) and buses.
Marking the occasion, DMT Chairman, H.E. Mohamed Ali Al Shorafa, stated: "Abu Dhabi's global ranking at 13 out of 141 cities in the IMD Smart City Index 2023 reaffirms our commitment to openness, innovation, inclusivity, and sustainability, validating our dedication to smart city development.
This summit seamlessly aligns with DMT's strategic plan and the UAE's AI Strategy 2031, reinforcing our commitment to smart city development and sustainability.
Moreover, the Abu Dhabi Smart Cities Summit reflects our continuous recognition as the MENA region's smartest city for three years, underlining our leadership in the evolving landscape of smart and sustainable cities."
Jung Sook Park, Secretary General of WeGo, expressed pride in joining the momentous event working towards a sustainable world and commended the UAE's visionary approach and Abu Dhabi's leadership in advocating for sustainable and smart city development. She also noted Abu Dhabi's mention in the IMD Smart City Index 2023 in partnership with WeGo. Park. She announced the appointment of the WeGo Middle East regional office in Abu Dhabi, signifying a significant advancement in the smart city approach and collaboration. Concluding, she highlighted that the summit, aligned with WeGo's goals, serves as a platform for sharing knowledge, experience, and best practices, with the potential for transformative outcomes and positive impacts.
H.E. Director General of Abu Dhabi Police Major General Maktoum Ali Al Sharifi Major General Maktoum Ali Al Shariqi, emphasised the significance of the Abu Dhabi Smart City Summit and its alignment with the visionary leadership's proactive approach to planning for the future and adopting the latest artificial intelligence technologies for sustainability. The summit offers exceptional global experiences and results, in conjunction with Abu Dhabi's accomplishments in adopting artificial intelligence technologies. These achievements have not only improved efforts and streamlined processes but have also yielded fruitful outcomes in law enforcement and security, leading to a positive impact on community well-being and happiness.
H.E. added that these accomplishments are the result of the care and support provided by the wise leadership, led by His Highness Sheikh Mohamed bin Zayed Al Nahyan, the President of the United Arab Emirates and Ruler of Abu Dhabi. He highlighted Abu Dhabi's remarkable record of consistently ranking as one of the world's safest cities. “The Abu Dhabi Police General Headquarters has implemented the Smart and Safe City system, making use of and applying artificial intelligence technologies across various law enforcement and security domains. This includes proactive crisis analysis and swift response times, enhancing the effectiveness of the security apparatus in supporting decision-makers”.
“The Driver Alert System, introduced by the Abu Dhabi Police General Headquarters, has enjoyed great success in reducing severe accidents and fatalities during adverse weather conditions since its launch in 2018. This has also resulted in groundbreaking achievements such as "zero fatalities" and "zero severe accidents" under various weather conditions. This success has been closely managed by local experts at Abu Dhabi Police as part of an ongoing efforts to develop smart solutions for a safer and more secure Abu Dhabi.
On his part, Brigadier General Salem Abdullah bin Barak Al Dhaheri, Acting Director-General of Abu Dhabi Civil Defence Authority (ADCDA) expressed his enthusiasm for the launch of the third edition of the 'Abu Dhabi Smart City Summit'. He emphasised the importance of this event as a platform for sharing ideas and knowledge on smart cities and artificial intelligence. “The ADCDA firmly believes in the significance of embracing technologies and cities as tools to ensure safety in the Emirate of Abu Dhabi, and our participation in this summit reflects our ongoing dedication to the advancement of cities and exchanging expertise in this field”. He further noted that this summit will play a role, in bolstering Abu Dhabi’s leadership in these domains. “We thank the Department of Municipalities and Transport for its continuous efforts in supporting sustainable development and smart cities, and we wish the summit success in achieving its goals”, he concluded.
H.E. Saeed Al Bahri Al Ameri, Director General of the Abu Dhabi Agriculture and Food Safety Authority (ADAFSA), expressed his pride in the status achieved by the Emirate of Abu Dhabi in the list of smart cities worldwide. He noted that thanks to the wisdom of its leadership, Abu Dhabi has become a model of quality and livability through the development and application of modern technology to enhance urban life and preserve natural resources.
He stated that ADAFSA is working to ensure the safety and quality of food available to the citizens and residents of Abu Dhabi, promoting the concept of sustainable agriculture and healthy food practices. He clarified that the application of technology in the food sector contributes to improving the supply chain and achieving sustainability, making Abu Dhabi one of the smartest cities in the world and a leader in the Middle East and North Africa region.
It is worth noting that the UAE has made significant progress in scientific research and the development of artificial intelligence, substantially enhancing its response capabilities in dealing with recent global challenges. In this year’s edition of ADSCS, we aim to engage more experts and visionaries who will contribute to the next phase, establishing a clear framework and vision to ensure liveability in cities, making them more adaptable and responsive to challenges, and providing local skills, community institutions, and cutting-edge technologies to support sustainable economic development.