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Internet Week Denmark 2015 was a great success

AU Smart Cities would like to thank all the participants. We look forward to seeing you again next year.

2015.06.19 | Silke Holmqvist

This year Internet Week Denmark was held in Aarhus on 1-5 June, with the festival focusing for the second year in a row on the internet and the Danish internet economy. During the festival AU Smart Cities hosted a two-day event at the Aarhus City Hall.

The programme was full of presentations and debates about the internet of the future and how it will influence modern urban development. The City Hall was packed with visitors from the business community and the public sector. Some of the leading figures in the field of smart cities were also present. For instance John Seely Brown, who is Chairman of the Board of Deloitte’s future think-tank “Center for the Edge”, and Jeremy Millard, who is Chief Policy Advisor at DTI Denmark and a Research Fellow at Brunel University.


Future urban development

The City Hall was the setting for the opening speeches, and the first speaker was April Rinne. As head strategist of the Collaborative Lab and a member of the board of the World Wide Web Foundation, she presented her research work within the fields of collaborative consumption and sharing economy.

During the afternoon there was a full programme including Emily Smith from the European Investment Bank presenting the latest strategies for financing smart city development. She provided insight into several of the financial instruments that are currently being developed in the European Investment Bank, which is the European Commission’s bank.

During the day a series of other presentations outlined (in words and pictures) a range of the most important topics regarding digitalisation and smart city development at the moment: innovative future alarm systems, smart technological solutions to urban problems, and international collaboration.


Smart Aarhus

The opening of the festival also included the launch of the new Smart Aarhus Wi-Fi initiative. The new wireless net solution is called Eduroam, and it was presented by the Mayor of Aarhus Jakob Bundsgaard. Eduroam has been accessible in Aarhus since 1 June 2015, and is a result of a strong partnership between the City of Aarhus and Aarhus University. They have made the Smart Aarhus network available to the people of Aarhus via wireless internet in all public buildings.

The next day the participants mingled and had brunch with the Danish Smart City Network, who had lined up a number of presentations.

There was a series of debates and presentations putting a wide range of Aarhus perspectives on the agenda. The topics discussed included digitalisation, help desk solutions for the general public, and future energy systems.


Open and Agile Smart Cities 

This year’s Internet Week Denmark also provided the opportunity to discuss a major project currently being run by AU Smart Cities. On 4 June 2015 six new Dutch cities were welcomed to the AU Smart Cities project called “Open and Agile Smart Cities” (OASC).

The aim of this project is to create open smart cities based on market demands and joint standards for implementing digital solutions in urban spaces. Katalin Gallyas took part as the representative of the new Dutch cities. She is Open Innovation Manager at the CTO Office in Amsterdam, and her presentation focused on management and innovation in relation to Open Data projects.

AU Smart Cities aims to create technologically sustainable solutions at a practical and strategic level. This means that the field of interest ranges all the way from international initiatives in top European politics to the implementation of good technological solutions in cities. The whole range of options from street lighting to market innovation was outlined by Wolfgang Bernecker, who is Business Initiative Manager at the Zumtobel Group. He presented new types of lighting solutions for cities, and discussed the interaction between financial efficiency and environmental sustainability.


See you next year!

The organisers and volunteers were delighted to see how many professional net nerds and ordinary internet users came along to the festival; and AU Smart Cities is already looking forward to next year's event, where focus will be on the internet and technology.

Many thanks to all the participants, and we look forward to seeing you again next year.