The Smart Cities Mission (SMC) organised the Smart Cities Mission Technology Showcase in Pune, for start-ups to present tech solutions to improve civic infrastructure.
SCM was developed under the Ministry of Housing and Urban Affairs, to drive economic growth and improve the quality of life for people residing in 100 cities across the country. It plans to enable local area development and harness technology, especially technology that leads to Smart outcomes.
The project’s strategic components of area-based development are city improvement (retrofitting), city renewal (redevelopment), and city extension (greenfield development).
At the event, SCM, in partnership with Invest India, showcased emerging technologies in four focus areas:
- Traffic management, transport and mobility, and pollution management
- Water, sanitation, and solid waste management
- Safety, surveillance, and security
- Social; health, education, and citizen engagement
According to a press release, the solutions in the above focus sectors will help solve some of the pressing issues faced by smart cities today.
The showcase is the first step towards bringing the innovation ecosystem closer to contributing to the development of these cities. Invest India has identified market-deployable technological solutions from start-ups for smart cities.
Invest India is the national investment, promotion, and facilitation agency of India, set up under the Ministry of Commerce and Industry. During the event, the agency signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) with SCM.
Start-ups and national science and technology research labs presented their solutions to smart city CEOs during small round-table discussions. During the sessions, each CEO along with knowledge partners interacted with the organisations to understand their solutions better and identify possible synergies.
Twelve smart city CEOs from Maharashtra and Gujarat along with various knowledge partners and R&D labs were present at the event. A total of nine start-ups presented their technologies, interacted, and networked with the various stakeholders.
Smart city CEOs expressed intent to work with the start-ups and further materialise pathways to deploy these solutions in their respective smart cities. To take the initiative forward, Invest India, SCM, and the Ministry of Housing and Urban Affairs will organise similar technology showcases in other zones of India as well.
Key outcomes of the event were:
- It helped bridge the gap between technology providers and technology seekers by creating a common platform.
- It discussed the implementation of technology-driven solutions for the problems identified in smart cities.
- It tackled pressing issues like security, transportation challenges, and lack of access to sanitation and clean air by providing accessibility to technological solutions.
Pune is emerging as a promising tech start-up destination in India. In 2018, the city offered the most tech job openings in the country after Bengaluru and Delhi. According to an industry expert, Pune has an active start-up ecosystem in software, manufacturing technology, and cleantech. It is a small city compared to other Indian metro cities and has historically been a centre for education and research. Today, it is also one of the top manufacturing hubs in India.