February 24, 2024

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Highlights from SDG 11 – Sustainable Cities and Communities at RBF Singapore 2016

Highlights from SDG 11 - Sustainable Cities and Communities at RBF Singapore 2016

OpenGov was at the Responsible Business Forum for Sustainable Development (RBF) held on 23 and 24 November 2016 in Singapore and attended a few workshops based on the UN’s 17 sustainable development goals (SDGs) to be achieved by the year 2030. SDG 11 – Sustainable Cities and Communities commits to implementing policies and practices, to ensure cities are safe, clean and sustainable. This includes improving access to affordable, quality and safe housing, improving road transport, expanding public transport, and investing in green public spaces. Particular attention must be paid to improving urban air quality, waste management and insulation against the impact of natural disasters.

The workshop panel (above photo, from left) consisted of:
Mr. Kriv Naicker, General Manager, Strategy and Business Consulting, Huawei
Ms. Esther An, Chief Sustainability Officer, City Developments Limited (CDL)
Datuk Ismail Ibrahim, Chief Executive, Iskandar Regional Development Authority
Dr. Supachai Tantikom, Chief Resilience Officer, Bangkok, 100 Resilient Cities
Ms. Lauren Sorkin, Regional Co-Director, City and Practice Management, Asia Pacific, 100 Resilient Cities (panel moderator) (not pictured)

Ms. Sorkin began with the question of what businesses and governments can do to work together to scale sustainable solutions and ensure that cities are more resilient and inclusive. Ms. An from CDL responded by saying that there is a very high level of government involvement in Singapore and the 3P (Public-Private-People) partnership model is very unique and working very well in Singapore. The example of the Building & Construction Authority (BCA)’s ambitious target of achieving 80% green buildings in Singapore by 2030 was cited- currently it is at about 30% and there will be lots of collaboration needed between the public and private sectors to achieve the set target in the next 14 years.

Ms. An explained that CDL works closely with the government to achieve and go beyond the basic level under the Green Mark Scheme for buildings, a leading green building rating system in the tropics and sub-tropics, which serves as a benchmark for evaluating environmental sustainability in buildings launched in 2005. In addition, the government has in recent years also incorporated the consideration of sustainable land and building use/practices for developers who are bidding for land for development – it is not just about who has the highest bid.

Turning to Dr. Tantikom, Ms. Sorkin asked him about what role the built environment can play in making cities greener, more inclusive and accessible. Dr. Tantikom’s reply was that the (Bangkok) city government has to play an important role in that and it begins with proper planning. In the case of Bangkok, the challenge is that the current city plans are outdated and new/future plans also revolve around the existing city space. Due to the densely-packed nature of the city, the amount of green space per capita in Bangkok is only 4.5 sq metre, which is much lower than the UN standard of 9 sq metre – the previous city governor wanted to expand that number but it still remains a big challenge to do so.

In recent years, Ms. Sorkin mentioned that the amounts of data generated by cities have grew exponentially and it presents an opportunity to organise that data in order to plan cities better. She then asked Mr. Naicker of Huawei about the role technology can play in more resilient and inclusive cities that are prepared for disasters if they occur. Mr. Naicker said that very often, many government agencies have collected their own data sets but are reluctant to make it easily available and share them across other agencies. His work includes working closely with local government authorities and agencies about how to get the data right, how to extract data and mostly importantly, look at how to interface the different digital layers and manage data properly across different networks.

Ms. Sorkin then asked Datuk Ibrahim about what is it that governments need from business in order to make cities more accessible and build local communities. Datuk Ibrahim replied that fundamentally, business and government communities are very different in terms of vision and very unlikely to meet each other. However, building communities will require some level of convergence between business and government, to identify and work on projects that will be able to improve the capacity of the community not to only improve living comfort but also enhance their economic standing.

When the project was first started to develop the Iskandar region, the involvement of the community was a top priority and 14 projects were identified in which the communities were given the necessary tools and knowledge so that they would be able to transit from their existing livelihoods to new types of economic activities. Due to development, these communities were not able to carry out the economic activities that they used to do, for instance, fishermen due to the development that was happening at the waterfront. With the same skills, they transited towards eco-tourism related jobs and drew more income collectively than they used to as individual fishermen.

Read about our coverage of SDG 9 – Industry, Innovation and Infrastructure here and SDG 17 – Partnerships for the Goals here.

PARTNER

Qlik’s vision is a data-literate world, where everyone can use data and analytics to improve decision-making and solve their most challenging problems. A private company, Qlik offers real-time data integration and analytics solutions, powered by Qlik Cloud, to close the gaps between data, insights and action. By transforming data into Active Intelligence, businesses can drive better decisions, improve revenue and profitability, and optimize customer relationships. Qlik serves more than 38,000 active customers in over 100 countries.

PARTNER

CTC Global Singapore, a premier end-to-end IT solutions provider, is a fully owned subsidiary of ITOCHU Techno-Solutions Corporation (CTC) and ITOCHU Corporation.

Since 1972, CTC has established itself as one of the country’s top IT solutions providers. With 50 years of experience, headed by an experienced management team and staffed by over 200 qualified IT professionals, we support organizations with integrated IT solutions expertise in Autonomous IT, Cyber Security, Digital Transformation, Enterprise Cloud Infrastructure, Workplace Modernization and Professional Services.

Well-known for our strengths in system integration and consultation, CTC Global proves to be the preferred IT outsourcing destination for organizations all over Singapore today.

PARTNER

Planview has one mission: to build the future of connected work. Our solutions enable organizations to connect the business from ideas to impact, empowering companies to accelerate the achievement of what matters most. Planview’s full spectrum of Portfolio Management and Work Management solutions creates an organizational focus on the strategic outcomes that matter and empowers teams to deliver their best work, no matter how they work. The comprehensive Planview platform and enterprise success model enables customers to deliver innovative, competitive products, services, and customer experiences. Headquartered in Austin, Texas, with locations around the world, Planview has more than 1,300 employees supporting 4,500 customers and 2.6 million users worldwide. For more information, visit www.planview.com.

SUPPORTING ORGANISATION

SIRIM is a premier industrial research and technology organisation in Malaysia, wholly-owned by the Minister​ of Finance Incorporated. With over forty years of experience and expertise, SIRIM is mandated as the machinery for research and technology development, and the national champion of quality. SIRIM has always played a major role in the development of the country’s private sector. By tapping into our expertise and knowledge base, we focus on developing new technologies and improvements in the manufacturing, technology and services sectors. We nurture Small Medium Enterprises (SME) growth with solutions for technology penetration and upgrading, making it an ideal technology partner for SMEs.

PARTNER

HashiCorp provides infrastructure automation software for multi-cloud environments, enabling enterprises to unlock a common cloud operating model to provision, secure, connect, and run any application on any infrastructure. HashiCorp tools allow organizations to deliver applications faster by helping enterprises transition from manual processes and ITIL practices to self-service automation and DevOps practices. 

PARTNER

IBM is a leading global hybrid cloud and AI, and business services provider. We help clients in more than 175 countries capitalize on insights from their data, streamline business processes, reduce costs and gain the competitive edge in their industries. Nearly 3,000 government and corporate entities in critical infrastructure areas such as financial services, telecommunications and healthcare rely on IBM’s hybrid cloud platform and Red Hat OpenShift to affect their digital transformations quickly, efficiently and securely. IBM’s breakthrough innovations in AI, quantum computing, industry-specific cloud solutions and business services deliver open and flexible options to our clients. All of this is backed by IBM’s legendary commitment to trust, transparency, responsibility, inclusivity and service.

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