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Smart City Initiatives: IEEE Bangladesh Section

Smart city is a concept gradually spreading across the world with the growth of IoT based technology. A smart city is a municipality that uses information and communication technologies to increase operational efficiency, share information with the public and improve both the quality of government services and citizen welfare. Turning out city into a smart one is not a luxury anymore, rather a necessity, a requirement to keep pace with the developing world. With that vision in mind, IEEE Bangladesh Section has taken the responsibility upon themselves to contribute to the requisite goal to digitize Dhaka city.

IEEE Bangladesh Section has successfully launched its new initiative, a Campaign for Smart City in Bangladesh on 30th May 2019. The campaign is called “Smart City Initiatives- Bangladesh” and has been set out with the goal of achieving a smart city by implementing smart thinking and smart technology. The 2nd big event of this ongoing initiative took place on 24-25 September, 2019. The slogan for the campaign is: “Smart thinking and smart technology for achieving a smart city for Bangladesh.”

In today's world, we are all familiar with the terms smart-phone, smart watch, etc. A smart city won't be any different. An example of smart city planning can be looked at through smart parking. With the help of an app, a person can be directed to the exact location of their car. Moreover, vehicle tracking will help them to identify their cars even if it’s stolen. This is just one example among the millions of ideas that are being implemented around the world, every day. To turn Bangladesh into a digital country and to prove its technical contribution to the country, IEEE Bangladesh Section has come forward with this campaign.

In this campaign, Team Leads, Ambassadors and Team-Members from IEEE Bangladesh Section gathered from all over the country and presented their updates on major areas of the Smart City Concept, for instance, Electricity and Power, Transportation, Education, Information, Communication, Security, Health-care, Industry & Housing and Environment.

On the launching ceremony, the event kick-started with the presentation slides created by the teams based on the progress they got, which picked up some existing technical and socioeconomic problems and suggested some probable smart solutions, not overlooking the limitations. The program was unfolded by Professor Dr. Shaikh Anowarul Fattah, Professor, Department of EEE and Director, Institute of Nuclear Power Engineering (INPE), BUET, who presented the road map for the campaign to the audience. Professor Dr. Celia Shahnaz, Chair, IEEE Bangladesh Section officially inaugurated the initiative and welcomed all the distinguished guests present there. The campaign then proceeded through technical and informative talks and presentations. Pursuing the campaign further, the Keynote Speaker of the event, Professor Dr. Saifur Rahman, President, IEEE Power and Energy Society and Professor, Department of ECE, Virginia Tech, USA, delivered an immensely informative talk on building an IoT Based Smart City.  Many renowned personalities in business and technological field were also invited in the event to share their vision in implementing smart solutions to the regular problems of Dhaka city.

The second event of this campaign was held at the Institution of Engineers, Bangladesh (IEB). It was even more consequential and informative. Mr. Md. Atiqul Islam, Honorable Mayor of Dhaka North City Corporation graced the event as the Chief Guest of the Inaugural Ceremony. Furthermore, Honorable Deputy Minister of Education, People’s Republic of Bangladesh, Mr. Mohibul Hassan Chowdhoury, M.P. was present as the Chief Guest of Closing Ceremony of the first day. The Chief Guest of the Closing Ceremony of the second day was the Honorable State Minister, Ministry of Information, People’s Republic of Bangladesh, Dr. Md. Murad Hassan, M.P. Dr. Saifur Rahman, Professor, Department of ECE, Virginia Tech, USA; Dr. Vincenzo Piuri, Professor, Department of Informatics, Universita' DegliStudi di Milano, Milano, Italy; Dr. Ramakrishna Kappagantu, IEEE PES Governing Board MAL, IEEE MGA Board Member, and IEEE Smart Cities Steering Committee Member; Mr. C N Raghupathi, Sr. Vice President cum India Business Head of Infosys; Dr. R. Nagaraja, MD-PRDC and PES India Council Chair were present in this event as the Keynote speakers. Similar to the first event, Dr. Shaikh Anowarul Fattah, Professor, Department of EEE and Director, Institute of Nuclear Power Engineering (INPE), BUET and Dr. Celia Shahnaz, Chair, IEEE Bangladesh Section, and Professor, Department of EEE, BUET presented the road map for the campaign. There were key personnel and representatives from more than 40 government and non-government organizations, institutions, and industries.

The event was inaugurated by a very insightful speech from Honorable Mayor, Mr. Md. Atiqul Islam. In his speech, he expressed the necessity of smart people to create a smart Dhaka city. He also conveyed his expectation that the two-day-long program will bring out effective solutions to many problems of Dhaka city. The two-day-long program came to an end with a very perceptive speech from the Chief Guest of the Closing Ceremony of the second day Honorable State Minister, Ministry of Information, People’s Republic of Bangladesh, Dr. Md. Murad Hassan, M.P. He stated the importance of implementing smart technology through utilizing Internet of Things (IoT), Big Data, Machine Learning and Deep Learning. As a doctor himself, Honorable Minister emphasized the significance of smart technology in medical and genetic engineering field as well. Lastly, he expressed his gratitude towards IEEE Bangladesh Section and IEB for organizing such a campaign which will take Dhaka city a step closer to become an exemplar of a smart city.

“Smart City Initiatives- Bangladesh” is an ongoing campaign by IEEE Bangladesh Section with the destination where every citizen of the country can utilize the technology to its utmost potential and live comfortably. With the help of the growing intellectual young population and expert professionals, it is only a matter of time until smart solutions of our day-to-day problems are being implemented resulting in a safer, more comfortable and healthier lifestyle.