Salah Hassan, professor of international marketing and strategic management at George Washington University, said that smart cities are the backbone of the economy, and are in dire need of developing technology, health and education amid a great human congestion in various capitals of the world.
This came during a symposium on "The Future of Smart Cities and the Digital Economy", one of the series of "Egypt Can" conferences, with the participation of the Minister of Immigration & Egyptian Expatriates Affairs, Nabila Makram, Ismail Abdel Ghaffar, Chairman of the Board of Directors of the Arab Academy for Science, Technology and Maritime Transport, and Osama Al-Ahmar, Governor of the Rotary Region, as well as prominent public figures, scholars and Egyptian expats.
Hassan praised the political leadership’s vision of launching smart cities such as New Alamein and the New Administrative Capital, and other smart cities, reviewing United Nations statistics on the population and its significant increase. “More than half of the world's population lives in populated cities and the proportion is significantly increasing,” he said.
He added that the size of the economies of smart cities is magnificent, and the volume of marketing is huge, as it is expected to reach $320 billion in the coming years, as it represents the backbone of the global economy.
He stressed that smart cities are one of the main sources of income, both through smart universities, which based on technology and creativity. He reviewed the stages smart cities are going through, the future of these cities around the world, media campaigns to market them and the technology they use, as well as ways to link them to sustainable development mechanisms, and the infrastructure needed, referring to moving out of cities, bike sharing and other solutions to reduce pollution.
Hassan praised the new administrative capital, its buildings that are designed according to the latest international standards, and the mechanisms are technology-based, transforming Egypt into a strong digital economy.
On her part, Makram explained that Egypt has reached qualitative leaps in development despite challenges, adding that smart cities are a model that should be expanded, praising the keenness of Egyptian scientists and experts abroad to transfer their knowledge and experiences to participate in development of the country.