"Espoo's holistic philosophy of humanizing every aspect of its technology and teaching innovation as a way of life was extremely impressive. Espoo's citizen engagement rates are extremly high, which democracies needs, and its economic output speaks for itself.", said ICF co-founder Lou Zacharilla
EUROCITIES warmly congratules Espoo, awarded Intelligent Community of the Year 2018 at the occasion of the ICF Summit in London. Espoo was honored in its first year as a competitor in the program, and as the only European shortlisted city of this year's competition.
Some key points behind Espoo's success:
- Leading the digital transformation: in the spring of 2017, Espoo companies and research institutions engaged in LuxTurrim 5G, a three-year pilot evaluating smart light poles as transmitters for 5G, the emerging mobile standard that promises hundreds of megabits per second of service.
Espoo sees that cooperation in the area of artificial intelligence could support sustainable development by advancing low-edmission traffic, battling indoor air quality problems in school and other building and preventing social exclusion. continuing along this parth, the city recently joined the Finnish Center for Artificial Intelligence (FCAI).
- Transforming education: for students at secondary school level, Espoo is working with a local university and private-sector companies on a new model for education called School as a Service (SaaS), which redefines school as a network of resources to support learning.
In Espoo, education is also an economic development program. In 2016, Espoo launched a collaborative project called KYKY Accelerated Co-Creation which turns schools into living labs supporting student's learning and growth, while giving educational technology companies a platform to develop products and services for learning. In autumn 2018, Espoo's upper secondary school students will even be allowed to hack the city's information system, as they will be invited to an ethical hacking course to test the security of systems under development.
- A sustainable city: from 2013 to 2016, more than 100,000 people participated in sustainability events and the city government launched 17 new sustainability projects in collaboration with partners and citizens.
ISO Omena Service Centre is an innovation platform between people, offering ten different public services (a library, youth services, a maternity and child health clinic, mental health and sustance abuse services, etc.) and various working places allows individuals, companies or any type of associations to co-create new ideas, services and products.
- A regional hub: Espoo is a partner in the Six City Strategy, a cooperative policy uniting the six largest cities in Finland to tackle urban challenges. It focuses on open innovation, open data and open participation.