About Smart Classes

Smart Classes bring city-regions, technology disruptors and key sector leads together to inform, consult and collaborate.

Market context

By 2025, Frost & Sullivan expects smart cities to be a US$ 2.4 trillion market,¹ whilst Grand View Research anticipates a cumulative worth of US$ 2.57 trillion and a compound annual growth rate registering 18.4% over 2018-2025.² The latest forecast study published by Persistence Market Research determines that US$ 3.48 trillion will be spent across the globe for implementation of smart cities during the 10-year assessment period, 2016-2026, and that the market will showcase staggering growth at a CAGR of 18.8%.³ GVR estimates that the UK market alone should surpass US$100 billion by 2025 and the Future Cities Catapult has already identified more than 32,000 companies in the UK offering smart cities solutions and associated products and services.

The smart city concept describes the use of digital technology and data to promote performance and wellbeing, effectively respond to citywide and global challenges, and ensure that critical infrastructure and public services are more interactive. Rapid urbanization, ageing infrastructure, adoption of new technologies, need for improved quality of life, scarcity of resources and an increased focus on environmental sustainability are all placing demands on the operations of our cities and, in the face of diminishing public budgets, driving industry growth. According to a new white paper by ABI Research, implementation of smart city technologies could save enterprises, governments and citizens globally over US$5 trillion annually by 2022.4 IDC predicts that by 2019, 40% of local and regional governments will use the internet of things to turn infrastructure like roads, streetlights, traffic signals and refuse bins into assets instead of liabilities.5

Adoption of open data, exploiting big data analytics, citizen engagement, cyber-physical systems and the IoT, cloud and edge computing, 3/4G evolution, 5G networking, social media and digital platforms, low-power WAN, machine learning and AI, robotics and drones, VR, gamification, blockchain, and the sharing economy are amongst the myriad of technologies and trends advancing smart city transformation. Essential ‘smart’ sectors utilised by burgeoning smart cities include transport, energy, water, waste, healthcare, assisted living, governance, security and buildings. The market encompasses an overwhelming number of application areas and addresses a diverse set of requirements, from  enhancing mobility, reducing traffic congestion, boosting air quality and minimising travel waiting time for public transport commuters to efficient delivery of public utilities, optimising energy for homes, and better administrative services.

Recent reports from Navigant Research6 and the Royal Town Planning Institute7 emphasise the unbounded nature of smart cities and the benefits associated with smart city programmes that develop collaboration networks across combined authorities, county authorities, and regional agencies. They also highlight the increasingly important role played by partner ecosystems – including public-private sector partnerships – in delivering a smart city vision and enabling the use of new data and technology at the scale of city-regions, county-regions and beyond.

Smart Classes helps bring these stakeholders together so that technology disruptors can inform, consult and collaborate with city-regions and key sector leads.

What is a Smart Class?

Smart Classes are collaborative, half-day, knowledge exchange and lead generation events, offering buyer side stakeholders the opportunity to find out exactly how they can deploy the latest digital technology-enabled solutions and best practices to tackle the challenges faced by aspiring smart cities, regions and communities.

The Smart Class format is built around thought-leadership presentations from innovators, in-depth roundtable discussions with experts and peers, and insightful keynotes delivered by inspirational role models.

TRANSPORT Smart Classes show key buyer side stakeholders how they can deploy the latest digital technology-enabled solutions, data-driven strategies and best practices to tackle their transport sector challenges (e.g. around congestion, traffic flows, air pollution and emissions, noise, first and last mile mobility, customer experience, cost effectiveness, connecting transport networks, managing and maintaining assets & infrastructure) and deliver a transport system that will allow passengers to travel efficiently, safely and with minimal impact on the environment. Delegates include commissioning, procurement, trialling and partnering leads, senior influencers and strategic decision makers from progressive city, borough, metropolitan, district and county councils; public and private transport operators/service providers; sub-regional transport bodies, combined authorities, integrated transport authorities and passenger transport executives; DfT and supporting national transport agencies; prime contractors etc. Core themes range from on-demand transport and MaaS applications, EVs and e-mobility, predictive traffic management, journey time monitoring, smart parking and enforcing CAZs and LEZs, to analysing people movements, new ways of visualising data, connected and autonomous vehicles, intelligent street lighting, real-time transport modelling, and smart ticketing and fare collection.

The 9 TRANSPORT editions we’ve hosted to date for burgeoning smart city-regions around the UK have been universally commended! Check out the testimonials and feedback from some of our previous delegates, sponsors and supporters or take a look at the “Retrospectives Round-Ups” from our London & South East England 2018Scotland 2018North of England 2018South West England & Wales 2018, Midlands 2019 and North of England 2019 editions. Since TRANSPORT Smart Classes are organised on a regional basis, a “series” sponsorship option equates to a genuine “Roadshow” opportunity!

EMISSIONS & AIR QUALITY Smart Classes show key buyer side stakeholders how they can deploy the latest digital technology-enabled solutions, data-driven strategies and best practices to improve urban air quality and drive down emissions and air pollution in the UK’s cities and regions. Delegates include commissioning, procurement, trialling and partnering leads, senior influencers and strategic decision makers from progressive city, borough, metropolitan, district and county councils; public and private transport operators/service providers; sub-regional transport bodies, combined authorities, integrated transport authorities and passenger transport executives; freight and logistics operators; port operators; vehicle manufacturers; energy providers; potential partners from industry and healthcare; DfT, Defra, BEIS, DHSC and supporting national agencies etc. Core themes range from IoT smart emissions monitoring, hyperlocal air quality monitoring, air pollution forecasting models based on neural networks, air pollution abatement systems/technologies, and mapping and visualising air quality in real-time, to managing and enforcing clean air and low emission zones, machine learning techniques to analyse weather and emissions data, deploying telematics and geo-fencing technology, indoor air quality innovations, EVs and hydrogen buses, Mobility-as-a-Service and commercial sector initiatives such as emissions based parking tariffs and anti-pollution bus stops.

EMISSIONS & AIR QUALITY Smart Class 2019 (which we hosted in London back in April) was so well received (check out the “Retrospectives Round-Up” for testimonials and feedback!) that we’ve agreed to add a 2nd half of year edition in Birmingham – EMISSIONS & AIR QUALITY Smart Class 2H 2019 – to this year’s schedule! 2020 will feature Regional focused Emissions & AQ editions for  “Southern England” and “Midlands and North” (we’re also considering Wales and Scotland editions!)

WASTE MANAGEMENT Smart Classes show key buyer side stakeholders how deploying the latest digital technology-enabled solutions, data-driven strategies and best practices can help increase the efficiency of waste collection, separation and disposal, and facilitate the transition of the UK waste market to a circular economy. Delegates include commissioning, procurement, trialling and partnering leads, senior influencers and strategic decision makers from UK waste collection authorities (WCAs), waste disposal authorities (WDAs), private waste contractors, local authorities (city, borough, metropolitan, district and county councils)/combined authorities and their waste management & recycling partners, retailers, health services, building and estate services, transport operations (and other major industry generators of waste), utilities and renewable energy providers, reuse and waste prevention organisations, central government departments and environmental agencies. Core themes range from collection vehicles logistics optimisation, automated waste collection systems, smart bins, analysing waste-related databases and new ways of aggregating, cleaning, visualising and sharing waste data, to connected asset management/using IoT to maintain assets before they breakdown, reuse and redistribution applications, innovative approaches to waste crime, waste tracking, smart waste compliance, ‘designing out waste’ in construction, waste-to-energy, applying blockchain technology to recycling, and new business models (e.g. digital sharing platforms, product as a service, sustainability as a service).

WASTE MANAGEMENT Smart Class 2018 (Check out the feedback) and our recent WASTE MANAGEMENT Smart Class 2019 (Many new testimonials will be included in the “Retrospectives Round-Up” later this summer) have both been very positively reviewed by sponsors and delegates alike so we’ve brought our 2020 edition forward in the calendar to April!

WATER MANAGEMENT Smart Classes will show key buyer side stakeholders how deploying the latest digital technology-enabled solutions, data-driven strategies and best practices can help manage the distribution and management of water resources, and also offers utilities an opportunity to improve efficiency and customer service whilst reducing water scarcity. Delegates include commissioning, procurement, trialling and partnering leads, senior influencers and strategic decision makers from UK water companies, wastewater and sewer operators, local and combined authorities, general insurers, large water consumers, regulators, agencies and central government bodies. Core themes range from smart leakage detection, smarter pressure management and smart metering to digital apps and platforms for demand management, smart telemetry systems for managing flood risk, smart sewers and wastewater management, and using real-time analytics for monitoring water quality and mapping assets.

ENERGY Smart Classes focus on the energy challenges faced by UK cities and regions (security of supply, ageing infrastructure, fuel poverty etc) and show key buyer side stakeholders how deploying the latest digital technology-enabled solutions, data-driven strategies and best practices can help utilities and distributors to forecast and manage loads better, reduce the need for costly infrastructure expansion, and improve service quality and customer satisfaction. Delegates include commissioning, procurement, trialling and partnering leads, senior influencers and strategic decision makers from UK electricity and gas utilities, independent energy companies, energy brokers and aggregators, local and combined authorities with energy provider partners, DNOs/DSOs/TSOs, insurers, large energy consumers, housing associations, energy authorities, central government departments and regulators. Core themes range from smart grids and metering, automated demand response, intelligent energy storage and smart home automation to energy disaggregation and machine learning, energy modelling and forecasting, predictive customer profiling and segmentation, energy efficiency in transport (EV infrastructure, smart street lighting etc), and IoT potentials (e.g. aiding widespread adoption of renewable energy sources, utility monitoring, electric cars communicating with people and the grid).

HEALTH & ASSISTED LIVING Smart Classes will show key buyer side stakeholders how deploying the latest digital technology-enabled solutions, data-driven strategies and best practices can help people to make healthier choices, improve the health of the most vulnerable, provide consistently excellent care for people when they need it and enable health enterprise to prosper and flourish to the benefit of all citizens. Delegates include commissioning, procurement, trialling and partnering leads, senior influencers and strategic decision makers from UK public health services (NHS England, NHS Scotland, NHS Wales, NHS Trusts, NHS special health authorities etc), insurance and private healthcare providers, local/combined authorities with healthcare and homecare provider partners, care agencies/organisations and community services, housing associations, charitable trusts, clinical commissioning groups and pharmaceuticals companies, private monitoring centres, university hospitals and academic health science networks, DH and supporting agencies/public bodies. Core themes range from telecare innovation, solutions addressing ethnic diversity, accessibility apps tailored to those with special needs, preventative monitoring and improving citizens health and fitness with wearable technology and devices, to connecting care in communities, gamification in digital healthcare, internet of medical things, chatbots and AI supported doctor-patient relationships.

PUBLIC REALM/SMART URBAN SPACES Smart Classes are also under consideration for our 2020/21 schedule!

Why choose Smart Classes?

Smart Classes bring together a carefully curated audience with a chance to interact with the experts and trailblazers. We create a warm event environment based around a truly tried-and-tested format to keep you engaged. Smart Classes provide a unique opportunity to see the technologies in use, learn about the latest trends and innovation breakthroughs, and ask on-the-spot questions. This goes further with our roundtables; dynamic discussion between experts and novices alike occur organically, and ensures you get all the information you need to make better decisions. You can look forward to taking everything you learn back to your own teams in your future endeavours at becoming a showcase smart city-region or a visionary key sector operator.

Smart Classes have evolved from the “Masterclassing Smart Cities & Regions” series, co-launched and produced by DX Forum LTD (trading as Smart Classes).

¹’Smart City Adoption Timeline’ Report, published January 2018; ²’Smart Cities Market Size, Share & Trends Analysis’ Report, published February 2018; ³’Smart Cities Market: Global Industry Analysis and Forecast 2016-2026′, published January 2017; 4‘Smart Cities and Cost Savings’ Report, published December 2017; 5‘IDC FutureScape: Worldwide Internet of Things 2017 Predictions’, published November 2016; 6UK Smart Cities Index’, published 4Q 2017; 7‘RTPI Position Paper on Smart-City Regions’, published September 2017

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