More than 50 electronic business experts from around the world, including leading scholars from China, attended the 17th International Consortium on Electronic Business at the Novotel in Dubai, discussing the meaning, applications, practices and issues related to smart cities which formed part of this year’s conference theme.
Supported by Dubai Tourism, the University of Wollongong in Dubai (UOWD) hosted the international conference, chaired by Dr Kathy Ning Shen, Associate Professor at UOWD and Dubai Congress Ambassador.
“Information and communication technology (ICT) has profound impact on re-designing urban living, by transforming the connections among people, organisations, governments and communities. Smart city, as a relatively new concept and vision, is definitely a step into the direction of improving the efficiency of services and quality of life”, commented Dr Shen.
The first keynote speech was delivered by Professor Patrick Y.K. Chau, on ‘When Smart Cities meet Big Data – Research Opportunities and Challenges’. Professor Chau is the Padma and Hari Harilela Professor in Strategic Information Management at University of Hong Kong. He is also appointed as Chang Jiang Scholar by the Ministry of Education, the People’s Republic of China and AIS Fellow by the Association for Information Systems.
During his presentation Professor Chau stated that ‘Smart Cities’ is a new and evolving concept that aims to capitalise on new technologies and developments to enhance a city’s systems, operations and service delivery. He also mentioned that with the proliferation of big data and Internet of Things, research on issues related to smart cities attracts great attention and interest from both academics and practitioners across many different fields.
Dr Eldon Y. Li, a university chair professor and former department chair of MIS at National Chengchi University, delivered the second keynote speech on ‘Multi-Level Research Design” which allows individual data with organisational differences to be included in one linear model by treating these differences as higher-level independent variables. Such kind of model is known as hierarchical linear model (HLM). In his presentation he highlighted why, when, and how to perform multilevel data analysis.
The conference provided academics scholars with a platform to present their research papers related to smart cities and also included industry panel sessions, workshops and editor panels.
The research paper discussions included timely topics such as Big Data Applications, FinTech, Blockchain, Smart City, Design Science and E-Health. The participants also visited Smart Dubai to learn the Smart Dubai’s latest services and future plans including, Dubai Now, Dubai Pulse (Data Sharing portal), Dubai Blockchain Strategy, Rashid (Our Artificial Intelligence Platform), and Happiness Meter (Capturing citizen happiness levels). Held at The Address, Downtown, Dubai, the five-day program concluded with a gala dinner and prize giving ceremony.