On November 30, the American National Standards Institute (ANSI) will host a free informational webinar from 2-3:00 pm EST to discuss two vehicles for engaging counterparts on standards and conformance that support the development of smart cities in Africa. The webinar will feature Leslie McDermott and Madeleine McDougall from ANSI's International Policy team.
Africa's rapid economic growth coupled with expanding urban populations have created an opportunity for African cities to leapfrog into the 21st century of innovation through smart city development. As the urban middle class expands, Africans will begin to demand improved services and world class infrastructure that seamlessly connect various aspects of their lives. As African cities embrace the smart City concept, city leadership will look towards technology developers for guidance to undertake the technical and nontechnical steps required to effectively advance data- and event-driven decision making to embrace this future vision.
ANSI has a growing portfolio of capacity-building programs, including two that could address smart Cities in Africa:
The Standards Alliance, a public-private partnership between ANSI and USAID focused on increasing implementation of the World Trade Organization (WTO) Technical Barriers to Trade TBT) Agreement in developing countries. The project engages markets all around the world, and recently expanded its work in Africa to include the East African Community (EAC), the Southern African Development Community (SADC), as well as focused engagement with Cote d'Ivoire, Ghana, Mozambique, Senegal, and Zambia undertaken in the support of the Trade Africa initiative.
U.S.-Africa Clean Energy Standards Program (CESP), a U.S. Trade and Development Agency (USTDA)-sponsored program implemented by ANSI in partnership with Power Africa that organizes workshops in Sub-Saharan Africa focused on standards-related issues for clean energy technologies. ANSI recently completed the first two workshops under the program focused on electrical safety and solar mini-grids.
During the webinar, ANSI's International Policy team will discuss the details of these programs, including how they provide funding for U.S. organizations to engage African counterparts and build cooperative and commercial relationships in support of smart cities. Leslie McDermott is Director, International Development at ANSI. As Director, Ms. McDermott oversees ANSI's capacity-building portfolio. Madeleine McDougall is Program Manager, International Development at ANSI. As Program Manager, Ms. McDougall manages the implementation of ANSI's capacity-building projects that engage Africa.
The November 30th presentation is part of an ongoing series of monthly webinars hosted by the ANSI Network on Smart and Sustainable Cities (ANSSC), a forum for information sharing among members of the standardization community, representatives of municipal government, and experts in urban infrastructure planning and sustainable development. Following the formal presentation, there will be an opportunity for Q&A and open information sharing among all webinar participants.