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Smart cities must develop in surprising ways to meet new challenges

Smart cities must develop in surprising ways to meet new challenges

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Siemenstadt in Berlin is one of a new generation of smart citiesThe new generation of smart cities should embrace new technologies and fresh approaches to combat their growing list of challenges, claims a new report from ABI Research. In its new whitepaper, 5 Ways Smart Cities Are Getting Smarter (registration), ABI suggests that digital twins and urban modeling, resilient cities, circular cities, micro-mobility, and smart spaces as the five new urban strategy shifts that will make smart cities smarter in the new ways they need. More →

Artificial Intelligence is transforming the workforce as we know it

Artificial Intelligence is transforming the workforce as we know it

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It may seem like an inevitable fact of administrative positions that anyone who fills them will be subjected to a never-ending litany of repetitive tasks. Employees in these jobs often don’t receive work that engages their brains or peaks their interests. Rather than flexing their critical thinking skills, these workers are resigned to completing the necessary, yet boring, administrative tasks.

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The bumpy road to automation, dancing elephants, free beer and some other stuff

The bumpy road to automation, dancing elephants, free beer and some other stuff

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The World Economic Forum’s Annual Summit in Davos offers the world’s elite the chance to rub shoulders and address important themes of capitalism and society. Its output has largely consisted of making assured noises about Big Subjects, and especially globalisation and the effects of technology on the economy, now typically framed around the current / imminent Fourth Industrial Revolution™.

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Cultural attitudes define the race for 5G connectivity as Germany and Holland inch ahead

Cultural attitudes define the race for 5G connectivity as Germany and Holland inch ahead

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New research commissioned by international law firm Osborne Clarke claims that businesses in Germany and the Netherlands could be leading the global race to embrace next-generation 5G connectivity. The Next Generation Connectivity research of executives and managers from 11 countries, conducted by the Economist Intelligence Unit, also claims that approaches and attitudes to adopting connectivity vary country to country. This, Osborne Clarke says, could hinder future opportunities.

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Artificial intelligence will create more jobs than it displaces, claims new study

Artificial intelligence will create more jobs than it displaces, claims new study

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Artificial Intelligence (AI) and related technologies are projected to create as many jobs as they displace in the UK over the next 20 years, according to new analysis by PwC. In absolute terms, around 7 million existing jobs could be displaced, but around 7.2 million could be created, giving the UK a small net jobs boost of around 0.2 million. While the overall net effect of AI on UK jobs may be broadly neutral, this varies significantly across industry sectors. The most positive effect of AI is seen in the health and social work sector, where PwC estimates that employment could increase by nearly 1 million, equivalent to around 20 percent of existing jobs in the sector. On the other hand, PwC estimates the number of jobs in the manufacturing sector could be reduced by around 25 percent, representing a net loss of nearly 700,000 jobs.

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How the UK car industry is driving the future of workplace design

How the UK car industry is driving the future of workplace design

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The British car industry has grabbed numerous headlines since the Brexit referendum due declining car sales and the uncertainty of its economic and regulatory prospects. In spite of these mounting concerns, the industry continues to invest in the design of its workplaces, not only by creating inviting and engaging places to work, but also by integrating automotive approaches to design and construction into the work environment. As a result, these workplaces don’t just help car companies to stay competitive; they also provide new ideas for all sectors eager to build smarter and more efficient places to work.

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Cities must harness potential of new technology to keep themselves moving

Cities must harness potential of new technology to keep themselves moving

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The UK Government needs to develop a new transport strategy based on local partnerships to keep up with technological advances in areas such as self-driving cars, claims a new report. Rethinking Urban Mobility has been published by engineering company Arup, in collaboration with the London Transport Museum, law firm Gowling WLG and transport company Thales. The report coincides with the publication of a similar study from the World Economic Forum which claims that autonomous and shared vehicles, digitalisation and decentralisation of energy systems require new approaches to mobility.

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Commercial property is undergoing tech disruption, but not as some believe

Commercial property is undergoing tech disruption, but not as some believe

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According to a recent report, executives in the commercial property sector have significant reservations about emerging disruptive technologies such as Big Data and predictive analytics, augmented and virtual reality, Blockchain and driverless vehicles, but see huge potential for process automation. Disruption is a strong word.  It conjures up apocalyptic images and radical interventions leaving unrecognisable outcomes in its wake. Big terms like artificial intelligence, Internet of Things (IoT) and big data bring equally big expectations.  For those of us at ground level, it’s hard to see the cumulative impacts of the many changes taking place around us.  It’s also hard not to share the same view expressed above. Future-gazing is nice to a point, but board level conversations like to take signposts from what is actually happening around them as well, and the commercial property sector is no exception. This sector is undergoing profound disruption but not necessarily from Silicon Valley’s headline grabbers.

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Commercial property sector disconnected from game changing new tech, claims report

Commercial property sector disconnected from game changing new tech, claims report

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Executives in the commercial property sector have significant reservations about emerging disruptive technologies such as Big Data and predictive analytics, augmented and virtual reality, Blockchain and driverless vehicles, but see huge potential for process automation according to the Altus Group CRE Innovation Report (registration required). According to the report, which is based on a global survey carried out in September of 400 CRE executives at firms with assets under management of at least US $250 million representing a total of over US $2 trillion, a large majority of executives report their firms have benefited from technology investments made over the past two years. However, when presented with six rapidly emerging disruptive technologies, only a minority of respondents recognised them as having the potential for major disruptive impact.

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Smart cities could lead to cost savings of $5 trillion for firms and governments, report claims

Smart cities could lead to cost savings of $5 trillion for firms and governments, report claims

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Smart city technologies could save businesses, governments and citizens globally over US$5 trillion annually by 2022 according to a new whitepaper from ABI Research (registration required). The new white paper analyses the scope for cost savings and efficiency as a driver for smart city deployments, smart technologies and the Internet of Things (IoT). According to the report, titled ‘Smart Cities and Cost Savings,’ the use and deployment of IoT and smart technologies will be pivotal to the future success of smart cities, but only if players collaborate to embrace a holistic approach. With higher concentrations of people and enterprises in cities as a result of urbanisation, smart city and IoT technology, along with new sharing and service economy paradigms, will be key for cities to optimise the use of existing assets, maximise efficiencies, obtain economies of scale and ultimately create a more sustainable environment. Automation, artificial intelligence, along with sensors, data-sharing and analytics, will all be critical in helping cities save costs.

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There is no clash of the digital and analogue worlds

There is no clash of the digital and analogue worlds

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Take no notice of the headline grabbing writers in the media. No battle lines are being drawn up between advocates of the analogue world of the 1960s/70s and those promoting the pioneering ideas for a bold digital 21st century. Despite the rhetoric written about driverless cars, being able to make phone calls by just thinking about who we want to call and the advance of artificial intelligence, we will almost certainly benefit from advances in technology.

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Saudi Arabia announces plans for $500 billion mega city in region

Saudi Arabia announces plans for $500 billion mega city in region

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Following last week’s announcement that Toronto is to create a digital city along its waterfront, Saudi Arabia has unveiled plans to build a $500 billion ‘mega-city’ spanning parts of several countries. The plans announced this week are a response to the need for the kingdom to produce a more diverse economic base and will create a zone that will run on alternative energy and have its own legal system and employment laws. The region will be known as Neom, a name derived from terminology meaning ‘New Future’ and will span parts of Saudi Arabia, Egypt and Jordan along the Red Sea coastline as a 26,500 square kilometre development of previously untouched land (pictured). Plans inevitably include technologies such as driverless cars, drones and robots, and were unveiled by Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman at the Future Investment Initiative in Riyadh this week. The zone is expected to cost around $500 billion (£380.5 billion) and will be powered entirely by renewable energy and focus on industries including energy, biotechnology, food, advanced manufacturing and entertainment.

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