Smart Cities for All Partners with Mexico’s Biggest Cities to Promote Digital Inclusion
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE: August 5, 2019
Contact: Udita Singh, G3ict, firstname.lastname@example.org
G3ict’s Smart Cities for All global initiative will collaborate with HearColors and leaders from industry and civil society to evaluate how inclusive Mexico’s two largest cities are as Smart Cities.
Mexico City and Guadalajara, two cities committed to being both smarter and more inclusive, will be assessed by a team of global experts using the Smart City Digital Inclusion assessment tool developed by G3ict and its partners.
ATLANTA, MEXICO CITY (August 5, 2019) – This week, Smart Cities for All, a project of the Global Initiative for Inclusive ICTs (G3ict), an international nonprofit with a history of leadership in digital inclusion and human rights, has convened in Mexico a team of global smart technology and inclusion experts to track the progress and measure the commitment to digital inclusion of the country’s two largest cities, Mexico City and Guadalajara.
The Smart City Digital Inclusion Maturity Model tool helps cities evaluate the current state of ICT accessibility and inclusion of persons with disabilities in city digital and smart services. Focused on a broad range of functions important to all cities, such as communications, procurement, training, and technology standards, it defines key performance indicators and metrics to support advancing accessibility and digital inclusion in a Smart City context.
“In Guadalajara we are working to be an inclusive city. In the Government Innovation Department, we developed this objective through digital inclusion, promoting accessibility to information technologies, to contribute to the social and economic development of the city,” said Saúl Jiménez, Director of Governmental Innovation in Guadalajara. “Together with the G3ict organization and with HearColors we will work on an exchange of information, with the objective of detecting the areas of opportunity and best practices to implement in the Municipality, in order to continue on this route, where each and every person will have easy access to the contents generated on the sites of this Municipal Government.”
To deepen their partnership and collaboration, G3ict has signed a separate Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) with both Mexico City and Guadalajara. The agreements call for leveraging resources and expertise to support each city’s digital transformation initiatives and promote the increased accessibility of Information Communication and Telecommunications (ICT) technologies. G3ict President, Axel Leblois, signed the agreement with each city. Saul Eduardo Jimenez Camacho, Director of Governmental Innovation signed an agreement with G3ict on behalf of the city of Guadalajara and Jose Antonio Peña Merino, Director of the Digital Agency for Public Innovation, signed on behalf of Mexico City.
James Thurston, G3ict Vice President and Smart Cities for All Managing Director praised both cities for their commitment to using technology to benefit all people, including persons with disabilities. “It is fitting that G3ict’s first assessments of Smart Cities outside the United States are these two cities,” said Thurston. “Both Mexico City and Guadalajara are global cities that are taking important steps to be both smarter and more inclusive. G3ict and our Smart Cities for All global initiative want to support their efforts with our tools and resources.”
For this week’s assessments of Mexico City and Guadalajara, G3ict has partnered with HearColors, a Mexican accessibility consultancy, to convene a team of Smart City, disability, and technology experts from civil society and industry. Expert participants in the assessments will come from Illumina, a Mexico disability NGO, Microsoft, IBM, Moovit, and the Mexican Human Rights Commission. In each city, an expert team will meet with leadership and key personnel from numerous city departments to understand how effectively Mexico City and Guadalajara coordinate their digital inclusion and smart city efforts to create inclusive experiences for everyone.
Monica Duhem, Hearcolors CEO thanked G3ict for its interest in Mexico being the first country to be included in the Smart Cities for All program. “We are very pleased with the team that will help us work with Mexico City and Guadalajara to identify the challenges and opportunities both cities have to make sure that their digital solutions are accessible to all. We are sure this exercise will be a success and will bring direct benefits to people with disabilities”.
The result of this week’s engagements between G3ict and the cities of Guadalajara and Mexico City will be an assessment of each city’s efforts on digital inclusion and a roadmap for making greater progress.
“For the visually impaired sector, Information and Communication Technologies have become indispensable tools that promote our academic, labor and social development. We thank Mexico City and Guadalajara for their participation in the Smart Cities for All program, as through these initiatives we walk towards an increasingly inclusive and accessible world” said Salvador Ángeles, representative of Ilumina, Ceguera y Baja Visión.
G3ict – the Global Initiative for Inclusive Information and Communication Technologies – is an advocacy initiative launched in December 2006, in cooperation with the Secretariat for the Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities at UN DESA. Its mission is to facilitate and support the implementation of the dispositions of the Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities (CRPD) promoting digital accessibility and Assistive Technologies. Participating organizations include industry, academia, the public sector and organizations representing persons with disabilities. G3ict promotes good practices in digital accessibility policies and programs and provides tools for advocates around the world including its Digital Accessibility Rights Evaluation Index (DARE Index) designed to benchmark countries progress. Through its division IAAP, the International Association of Accessibility Professionals, G3ict offers professional development resources and certification to more than 2,000 members in 46 countries. Since 2011, G3ict organizes the M-Enabling Summit in cooperation with E.J. Krause and Associates which promotes innovation in accessible technologies and environments. For more information visit the G3ict website.
About Smart Cities for All
In 2016, G3ict partnered with leading civil society and industry organizations to launch the Smart Cities for All global initiative. Since then, Smart Cities for All has defined the state of ICT accessibility in cities worldwide and created tools and a path forward to improve the digital inclusion of persons with disabilities and older persons. Our goal is to eliminate the digital divide for persons with disabilities and older persons in Smart Cities around the world. We are partnering with leading organizations and companies to create and deploy the tools and strategies needed to build more inclusive Smart Cities.