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Imagining Trend 6 June Jun 2019 1056 6 June 2019

The Italian path to a Smart City

The foundations? The challenge of low-impact mobility and the creation of an innovative network of companies, public administrations and young start-ups

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58% of the world’s population lives in cities and in 2030 two-thirds of the earth’s inhabitants will find themselves living in urbanized areas. This is why we need our cities to be smarter. How can we translate Smart City to Italian? “Smart city, wise city”, according to Marco Guarna, partner of Digital Magics, the incubator of innovative digital startups listed on the stock exchange which has brought the third stage of Gioin last May 20th’s to Rome. Gioin is a network that involves its members in a path of information and disruptive training, aimed at providing tools, support and suggestions, necessary to face the challenge of the fourth industrial revolution and to bring the world of Italian business closer to the startup ecosystem innovative.

COMPANIES, PA AND START UPs: THREE WORLDS IN NEED OF CONNECTION

“Gioin is a contact network between the innovation market and the companies”, Alberto Fioravanti, founder and president of Digital Magics explained, recalling how the digital market has constantly “been growing for 4 years with, in Italy alone, 10,200 innovative startups employing 55,000 people. But we have understood that we still need to find an Italian way for startups, since investments in the sector are one seventh of the European average”. This is the reason behind the idea of bringing together public and private companies with young startups to exchange experiences and create opportunities for collaboration. So those "three billion, constantly connected devices, which provide an immense potential of data that we have available and must be organized" - Angelo Zerega di Deloitte said - can be put to use and available to " the main actor who must be the citizen, the active part using the services”.

Two moments of the third stage of Gioin that was held in Rome in recent weeks

THE CHALLENGE OF E-MOBILITY

The role of transport is central to the construction of an increasingly smart city. This was confirmed by two of the participants at the round table: the Open Innovation Manager of the Ferrovie dello Stato, Rita Casalini -who explained how the company's plans no longer involve simple customers but rather people for whom services are increasingly thought to be more flexible, enhancing stations in the center of the cities- and Stefano Minguzzi, Digital Media Manager for Rome Mobility Services.

And Modis has also decided to invest, according to Paolo Stefani, Senior Business Manager of the tech consulting company: "The decisive thrust for us has come from the environmental world. Thanks to the transformation generated by e-mobility, many other industrial sectors will play a role and presumably will face responsibilities, from which fresh opportunities will arise", added Stefani. He discussed how Modis joined Formula E, which in Rome (in the opening photo) has recently witnessed a new edition where “for the first time the pilots didn’t need to stop to switch cars, as was happening until last year, to take one with charged batteries”, indicating the continuous progress of the sector. The company is participating, as a technological partner, in the Teinvein industrial research and experimental development project (innovative technologies for intelligent vehicles), funded by the Lombardy Region through European Union structural funds. The project aims to create a vehicle with self-driving ability. A theme that opens up new boundaries, not only industrial and technological: “We are developing a system design compatible with the social feasibility of all these technologies, so that machines can make autonomous decisions consistent with what is socially acceptable”, explained Antonio Carcaterra, professor at the Faculty of Engineering of Wisdom in Rome and president of Sapienza Innovazione. In other words, there are many and complex implications behind the transformation of our cities that also require that “the political arena act to facilitate this process”, concluded the Lazio Regional Councilor for Economic Development, Gian Paolo Manzella.

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