Agreed national standards ‘would help smart cities strategies’

Proposed local and federal government smart city plans would benefit from improved knowledge-sharing and enhanced cybersecurity, says Standards Australia.

With 21 percent of local governments piloting smart city projects, the peak standards body says the Federal Government should develop a smart cities assurance framework that builds on its existing Smart Cities framework, including security-related standards to minimise any direct and economic and operational costs.

The recommendation is one of 11 contained in the Smart Cities Standards Roadmap published this week, including improved data accessibility and interoperability across Australia.

Chief executive officer Adrian O’Connell said: “Cities and communities will continue to become more digitalised, and industry, government and communities will need support in capitalising on these opportunities.”

He said setting up advisory groups would facilitate improved knowledge-sharing to support the development of safe, sustainable, and resilient cities and communities.

In its Building Up and Moving Out report on the Australian Government’s role in the development of cities in 2018, the House of Representatives Standing Committee on Infrastructure, Transport and Cities recommended that Standards Australia develop a “standards road map” for Australia, including:

  • identifying the standards required in each sector to unlock the benefits of connected Australian cities; and
  • developing standards in strategic priority areas, including standards to safeguard the interoperability of IoT and other Smart Cities technologies.

In response, Standards Australia established a Smart Cities Standards Reference Group to help support the federal government’s agenda of sustainable and resilient communities and to develop a national suite of Smart Cities standards. 

Their new road map also outlines the importance of governance standards to measure the effectiveness of proposed smart city strategies and plans implemented by local and federal governments.

In related news, the NSW Government has also announced its Smart Places strategy, which aligns with the state’s Smart Infrastructure Policy setting the minimum requirements for smart technology to be embedded in all new and upgraded infrastructure from 2020 onwards.

NSW Government Chief Data Scientist Dr Ian Oppermann said: “Standards will be an important part of supporting population growth and the safety of personal data, among other things, as smart cities continue to evolve”.