Today there are various smart technological solutions that help institutions and businesses become more efficient and people’s lives smarter. These include automatic energy management of municipal buildings and installations, or sensors that provide home care immediately if the patient has fallen or is need of help. Smart technologies also provide real-time information about traffic congestion and available parking spaces that come straight to your mobile. Telenor has now started a large project to support local authorities to make a comprehensive digitization strategy.
ICT helps improve efficiency
A planned long-term investment in ICT is important for a forward-leaning municipal administration. To succeed, the need for knowledge and expertise, and a clear strategy for the municipality’s development using ICT is imperative. A plan for digitization and mobility is the first step in this journey. Smart municipality has become a concept in municipalities that have a clear understanding of how they use ICT as a tool to improve operational efficiency.
The authorities set clear requirements that Norway’s municipalities get more efficient services and benefits, citizens and businesses want to deal digitally with municipalities as they do elsewhere in society, and smart municipalities can free up resources to become an even better place to live and work.
Smart Municipalities are attractive
Smart municipalities are more popular to live and work in. According to a large survey conducted by TNS Gallup for Telenor in 2015, citizens expect that the municipality they live in is run efficiently using modern tools. Nearly 90 percent of the respondents say that the elderly will be better off with welfare technology, while 70 percent think it is attractive to live in a smart municipality. It also confirms that there is great variation between municipalities in adopting digital technology. A first step for a smart municipality is to have an overarching strategy on how to do this.
Most municipalities do not currently own expertise to carry this out themselves. Telenor currently cooperates with many municipalities to create a digital strategy.
Smart Municipalities are here to stay
“So far we have talked with around 200 municipalities on how to proceed in order to digitize your service, and we have pilots in six municipalities. In addition, we provide various welfare technology solutions to 80 municipalities. Some municipalities have made good progress, but the potential for smart use of technology in the municipal sector is still significant”, says Berit Svendsen CEO Telenor Norway.