04 Jul 2018
Auckland Council wins international IDC Smart City Award
Auckland Council's Safeswim receives Asia Pacific gong in IDC's 2018 Smart Cities Awards
Auckland, New Zealand, 5th July 2018 – IDC today announced Auckland Council’s Safeswim program as the winner of the Smart Water Category, in the Smart Cities Asia Pacific Awards. Auckland Council beat out competition from South Korea, Australia and Hong Kong to take the top honours in its catergory.
From February to November 2017, Auckland Council and Watercare worked in partnership with Surf Life Saving Northern Region and the Auckland Regional Public Health Service to upgrade the ‘Safeswim’ program, to better provide accurate information about swimming conditions in the region.
Safeswim now provides a fully-integrated web and digital signage platform to provide advice for beach users, allowing them to ‘check before they swim’ and make informed decisions about when and where to swim. The system combines real-time data on the performance of the wastewater and stormwater networks with predictive models, to generate forecasts of water quality at 92 swimming sites around the Auckland region. The water quality predictions include a range of factors such as rain intensity, duration and location, as well as tide, sunlight, wind speed and wind direction.The water quality information is complemented with advice from Surf Life Saving Northern Region and the Auckland Regional Public Health Service on other safety hazards, such as dangerous wind and wave conditions, rip currents and the presence of hazardous marine life.
The safeswim.org.nz website is the primary communication channel for Safeswim, supplemented with on-location signage Safeswim predictions now have a 6786% accuracy when identifying swimming conditions — a major improvement over earlier programmes.
Matt Montgomery, Head of Innovation, Auckland Council says, “Safe Swim is an excellent example of how Auckland Council, along with its partners, has innovated to deliver a world-class data analytics platform that has been able to engage and inform Aucklanders as to the condition of water quality across our beautiful beaches. Our Smart City Programme, which we are launching in September, will aim to deliver outcomes like these across a wide range of topics to ensure we can make Auckland the world’s most liveable city.”
IDC Market Analyst Jefferson King says, "In recent years New Zealand has been experiencing tremendous population growth in its urban centres, putting strain on infrastructure such as roading and housing. To help cope with these growing pains, cities need to use resources more efficiently and that’s what Smart Cities are all about. Auckland Council is doing just that, with a range of innovative projects that leverage technology to provide positive social outcomes."
"What stood out about the Safeswim project was the high level of collaboration between the different organisations and the increased accuracy it delivers. The positive outcomes of the project itself are clear, helping locals make better informed decisions regarding swimming safety."
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About the Smart City Asia Pacific Awards
The Smart City Asia Pacific Awards (SCAPA) were created to identify, benchmark and publicly vote on the best projects each year across 12 functional smart city strategic domains. It is an intensive six-month process that tracks and evaluates hundreds of smart city initiatives in the Asia Pacific region.
The award categories are: Administration; Civic Engagement; Digital Equity and Accessibility; Education; Public Health and Social Services; Public Safety; Smart Buildings; Smart Water; Sustainable Infrastructure; Transportation; Tourism, Arts, Libraries, Culture and Open Spaces; and Urban Planning and Land Use.
All finalists compete via IDC benchmarking, public voting, and judging from an international advisory council. In 2018, 50% of the weighting came from IDC benchmarking, public votes accounted for 25%, while the remaining 25% was based on assessment by the international advisory council.
About IDC Government Insights
IDC Government Insights assists government policy, program, and IT leaders, as well as the suppliers who serve them, in making more effective technology decisions by providing accurate, timely, and insightful fact-based research and consulting services. Staffed by senior analysts with decades of government and IT industry experience, our global research analyzes and advises on business and technology issues facing the Federal/Central and local/provincial Governments. International Data Corporation (IDC) is the premier global provider of market intelligence, advisory services, and events for the information technology market. IDC is a subsidiary of IDG, the world’s leading technology, media, research, and events company.
International Data Corporation (IDC) is the premier global provider of market intelligence, advisory services, and events for the information technology, telecommunications, and consumer technology markets. With more than 1,100 analysts worldwide, IDC offers global, regional, and local expertise on technology and industry opportunities and trends in over 110 countries. IDC's analysis and insight helps IT professionals, business executives, and the investment community to make fact-based technology decisions and to achieve their key business objectives. Founded in 1964, IDC is a subsidiary of IDG, the world's leading technology media, research, and events company. To learn more about IDC, please visit www.idc.com. Follow IDC on Twitter at @IDC.