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Smart Cities in the Philippines Fuel Digital Economy

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Local government units in the Philippines have embraced the concept of “Smart Cities” in line with ISO 37120 standards, prioritising environmental, social, and governance factors to enhance citizens’ quality of life, emphasising progress and prosperity.

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The Philippine government recognises that public officials must adopt a compassionate approach, shaping policies and services that cater to the diverse needs of their constituents. A Smart City is one where inclusivity, seamlessness, and personalisation are part of integral aspects of governance.

Efficient technological infrastructure plays a central role in the Smart City framework. Leveraging Geographic Information Systems (GIS) and GIS-enabled tools enables the smooth coordination of various agencies, particularly in disaster management scenarios.

According to the Philippine government pursuit of Smart Cities and the digital economy is a multi-faceted transformation that prioritises the well-being of its citizens, sustainable development, and economic growth. It is more than a mere technological evolution; it’s an approach rooted in inclusivity, innovation, and a steadfast commitment to the prosperity of its people.

Also, Smart City should have a people-centric approach as the local leaders prioritise designing policies and services that cater to the diverse needs of their constituents. This approach ensures inclusivity, seamlessness, and personalisation for all, emphasising a commitment to improving the quality of life.

Additionally. technological advancement and operational efficiency are other key elements. The use of Geographic Information Systems (GIS) and GIS-enabled tools enhances the coordination of various agencies.

This not only streamlines daily operations but also plays a pivotal role during crisis management scenarios. Smart Cities also harness technology to optimise resource utilisation and promote eco-friendly transportation, reducing air pollution and creating green spaces that benefit public health.

Tackling a significant development challenge, the Philippines is seeking to create high-quality jobs for its growing population. The transition to Smart Cities presents an opportunity to address this issue. By implementing a Smart City Roadmap with innovative solutions, the nation can stimulate economic growth and generate high-quality employment opportunities.

Besides, Smart Cities leverage innovative solutions, particularly in food security, a critical issue. Initiatives such as those promoted by the Department of Science and Technology (DOST) focus on food shelf life and creative agricultural solutions. These advancements not only modernise traditional farming practices but also attract younger generations into the agricultural sector, fostering technology adoption and knowledge transfer.

Also, the Small Enterprise Technology Upgrading Programme (SET-UP) stands as a flagship initiative. It encourages micro, small, and medium enterprises (MSMEs) to adopt DOST’s technological innovations, leading to operational enhancements, improved product quality, increased productivity, and heightened competitiveness.

With these, the 2023-2028 DOST strategic pillars revolve around promoting human well-being, wealth creation, wealth protection, and sustainability. These pillars create a comprehensive framework for Smart City development, underscoring the importance of the circular economy, environmental protection, and conservation through research and development.

Local leaders cited that the nation is in the midst of a transformative journey, driven by the principles of inclusivity, innovation, and a steadfast commitment to the prosperity of its citizens. Smart Cities represent not just a technological evolution but a holistic approach to improve the lives of the population and stimulate economic growth.

These cities provide the infrastructure, innovation, education, and services needed to create a thriving digital economy, leading to economic progress, job creation, and an enhanced quality of life for all Filipinos.


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