Emilia Cardamone, Programme Manager for Digital Construction at BSI Group and a member of Women in BIM, discusses with PBC Today Magazine how to move beyond a tech-only approach to build sustainable, resilient cities and communities of the future.
The Brazilian charter for “smart cities” is a milestone for the regulation of the smart cities segment by creating a standard for the public and private spheres in relation to the rights and duties of each one in the requalification of their cities, it was launched during the Smart City Session in December 2020, and its ideal is to make Brazil look for improvements and innovations for its cities, making them more and more modern and a firm step towards better cities for people.
The construction of the text had a collaborative aspect, by the most varied sectors and was carried out within the scope of the Brazil x Germany cooperation project to support the National Agenda for Sustainable Urban Development in Brazil (ANDUS). The initiators and coordinators of the process are the Ministry of Regional Development (MDR), the Ministry of Science, Technology, and Innovation (MCTI), the Ministry of Communications (MC), and the German agency GIZ.
According to the Federal Government, there were more than 200 professionals involved in the process of creating the charter, presenting eight strategic objectives for the construction of a public, common, and articulated agenda. One of the main concerns is regarding the population’s accessibility to technologies and the establishment of systems with transparency, security, and privacy.
The main points covered were:
New relationships are confusing the concepts and boundaries of the urban, so it is necessary to understand what changes are imposed on urban space by digitalization and in what ways it responds to this.
Internet access is a right of all people through the Marco Civil da Internet in Brazil, but it is important to develop and implement policies, programs and infrastructure projects, and other aspects related to digital inclusion.
The document provides for the establishment of data governance systems and technologies with transparency, security, and privacy. Information needs to be presented in inclusive language, in an easy-to-use form, and systems must ensure the preservation of personal data.
The Charter prioritizes the adoption of innovative and inclusive models of urban governance to strengthen the role of public authorities in managing the impacts of digital transformation in cities. The objective is to build political-legal-institutional environments that are favorable to innovation and adapted to the territorial context and the level of activity of the institutions.
The document plans to promote local economic development and encourage models and instruments for financing sustainable urban development in the context of digital transformation. To do so, financial resources will be needed to implement environments that encourage innovation, research, and the implementation of infrastructure.
A massive and innovative movement in education and public communication is needed for greater engagement of society in the process of building smart cities. The actions must serve people of all ages, genders, races, and social classes, strengthening their autonomy.
The entire process must be constantly evaluated, and for this to happen it is necessary to build ways to understand the impacts of digital transformation in cities. The analysis must include sociocultural, urban-environmental, economic-financial, and political-institutional aspects.
This is how the definition of “Smart Cities” remained:
“These are cities committed to sustainable urban development and digital transformation, in their economic, environmental and socio-cultural aspects, which act in a planned, innovative, inclusive and networked manner, promote digital literacy, governance, and collaborative management and use technologies to solve concrete problems, create opportunities, offer services efficiently, reduce inequalities, increase resilience and improve the quality of life of all people, ensuring the safe and responsible use of data and information and communication technologies.”
If you are interested in the letter and would like to read it in its entirety, please click on the link: http://www.andusbrasil.org.br/images/ANDUS_Factsheet_ENG.pdf