Instrumented Interconnecteds Intelligent

By Anthony D. Williams, Program Chair, World Congress on Information Technology

In the past few years, digital technologies have revolutionized everything from the way we work to the way we educate, inform and entertain ourselves. In fact, millions of engaged citizens are using the Web to connect and collaborate around shared concerns and opportunities in their communities and in international forums and institutions.

Now, as Canada readies itself to host the World Congress on Information Technology (WCIT2012) in Montreal this October, we have a unique opportunity to mobilize large numbers of connected citizens to participate in a global, online conversation designed to elicit new ideas and innovations that could help address some of the world’s most urgent challenges.

Through large-scale brainstorming, individuals and organizations from diverse sectors and regions can discuss critical questions like: How do we nurture innovation and make our economies more productive?  How do we maintain the quality of public services with fewer tax dollars? How can our health care systems address rising costs while embracing new technologies and techniques that can improve patient care? How do we convince young people to pursue education and training programs in science, technology, engineering and math—disciplines that are most likely to prepare young people for the jobs and industries of the future?

There is no doubt that the list of challenges facing every jurisdiction is both long and unsettling. And yet, the potential for social ingenuity has arguably never been greater.

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Consider some of the possibilities: In the economy, greater openness in innovation and science could create new opportunities for entrepreneurs and businesses to tap into global innovation networks. In education, new models of collaborative pedagogy and open access to online course materials could put world-class educational resources in the hands of aspiring students everywhere. In healthcare and medical research, increased patient engagement in preventative medicine and digitized healthcare delivery could lower costs and improve outcomes for patients, doctors and researchers. In confronting climate change and other environmental challenges, the application of digital technologies to enable smart grids and smart buildings could help avert several gigatons of CO2 emissions and deliver massive global energy cost savings to businesses, taxpayers and consumers.

Global brainstorming jam sessions provide an opportunity for everyone to contribute new and innovative ideas—ideas that will help fulfill the true promise of the digital age. Participation in these kinds of global initiatives will produce better and more diverse innovations and create a greater sense of community—both of which are critical for implementing action items.

Provide your perspective in this upcoming virtual global brainstorm and learn more here:

Follow the conversation: #worldtechjam

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