A socially oriented non-financial development institution and a major organizer of international conventions, congress, exhibitions, business, social and sporting, public, and cultural events.

The Roscongress Foundation is a socially oriented non-financial development institution and a major organizer of international conventions; exhibitions; and business, public, sporting, and cultural events. It was established in pursuance of a decision by the President of the Russian Federation.

The Foundation was established in 2007 with the aim of facilitating the development of Russia’s economic potential, promoting its national interests, and strengthening the country’s image. One of the roles of the Foundation is to comprehensively evaluate, analyse, and cover issues on the Russian and global economic agendas. It also offers administrative services, provides promotional support for business projects and attracting investment, and helps foster social entrepreneurship and charitable initiatives.

Each year, the Foundation’s events draw participants from 208 countries and territories, with more than 15,000 media representatives working on-site at Roscongress’ various venues. The Foundation benefits from analytical and professional expertise provided by 5000 people working in Russia and abroad. In addition, it works in close cooperation with 160 economic partners; industrialists’ and entrepreneurs’ unions; and financial, trade, and business associations from 75 countries worldwide.

The Roscongress Foundation has Telegram channels in Russian (t.me/Roscongress), English (t.me/RoscongressDirect), and Spanish (t.me/RoscongressEsp). Official website and Information and Analytical System of the Roscongress Foundation: roscongress.org.

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Smart Environments: A New Level of Urban Development
24 May 2018
Demand for smart urban environment appears in Russia and worldwide

The demand is surely there. Above all, it is coming from the municipalities — Nikolai Tsukanov, Presidential Aide in charge of local government issues.

First of all, this is a city that is convenient for people — Andrey Chibis, Deputy Minister of Construction, Housing, and Utilities of the Russian Federation.

Smart cities mean full digitalization, or in other words all services, the entire infrastructure should be interconnected and optimized in order to improve the quality of service for less money — Jean-Louis Chaussade, Chief Executive Officer, SUEZ.

Smart City is a systematic process of creating cities through the use of information technologies that improve the quality of life of citizens, improve the quality of public services and improve the competitiveness of cities — Joe So, Chief Technology Officer Industry Solutions, Huawei Enterprise Business Group, Huawei Technologies Co., Ltd.

The role of large cities in global development continues to grow

If you look at the numbers, what will happen in the next 10-15 years, first of all 65% of the world's population will live in cities, compared to only 50% today. <...> Two-thirds of global GDP will be generated in 650 cities. This means that it will be large cities, smart cities, they will be the main levers of development in the next 15 years — Jean-Louis Chaussade, Chief Executive Officer, SUEZ.

The quality of the urban environment becomes a significant factor in choosing the place of residence

Paradoxically, for the first time money is not the main thing. <...> First of all, when they choose a particular city they look at the urban environment. <...> 52% of our readers (and a total of 2000 people took the poll) answered: "Yes, I do study the question of city life quality in detail." Only for 23% listed salary as the main thing in moving to another city — Ignat Bushukhin, Editor-in-Chief, "RBC Real Estate" .

If you want to live next to nice people, next to smart people, you need to offer people a good environment — Jean-Louis Chaussade, Chief Executive Officer, SUEZ.

Comfort parameters depend on local specifics

We need to get rid of the illusion that smart cities are all the same. Comfortable cities are in competition in a specific location - in a specific country, in a particular region. And for us, the set of these parameters in each specific place will be different — Oleg Mamaev, President, "Leader-Invest" JSC .

It is impossible to give one definition for every case — Chiara Appendino, Mayor of Turin.

The high cost of creating and maintaining a smart urban environment

The region's economy directly affects the opportunities to create a quality environment. <...> What can be done in rich regions or in advanced regions is almost impossible where there is no growth potential — Mikhail Oseevskiy, President, Rostelecom.

Every year, a smart city requires 16 to 26% of operating expenses. <...> If we do not pay this, the project of smart cities will die — Joe So, Chief Technology Officer Industry Solutions, Huawei Enterprise Business Group, Huawei Technologies Co., Ltd.

Lack of necessary knowledge and uniform recipes

Today, most of us governors from outside the capitols probably do not even know what a smart city is. We understand that we have a desire to create comfortable conditions for life, there are projects pursuing that on different territo — Alexander Tsybulskiy, Acting Governor of Nenets Autonomous Area .

It is much more difficult to manage a city with 20 million residents compared to the city with 1 million. Therefore, if you look at public services and infrastructure, you need to increase and manage the entire infrastructure in a different way, you need to forgo the usual ways — Jean-Louis Chaussade, Chief Executive Officer, SUEZ.

Global climate change challenges comfortable environment

Cities will face new problems in connection with the global warming, and these problems will have to be resolved in order to ensure a pleasant living environment — Jean-Louis Chaussade, Chief Executive Officer, SUEZ.

Developing standards and financing mechanisms for smart cities

The task we’re facing is to introduce modern innovative solutions, digital technologies and make cities comfortable. To this end, incentives are needed. Now there is a discussion concerning the amount of support. We certainly expect that this amount of support for urban environments will increase — Andrey Chibis, Deputy Minister of Construction, Housing, and Utilities of the Russian Federation.

The increase in subsidies to the regions of the Russian Federation is primarily intended for those that are implementing modern digital solutions. In order to have a clear and understandable measuring instrument, in addition to the quality index of the urban environment that has already been earned, we introduce the smart cities criteria, this IQ — Andrey Chibis, Deputy Minister of Construction, Housing, and Utilities of the Russian Federation.

Since we are talking about budgetary funds, a set of standards would allow them to correlate with the subsidies, let them be compared with best practices and so on — Veniamin Golubitsky, President, KORTROS.

It is clear that all decisions must have returns on investment. It is clear that this is largely a new angle on the distribution of finance between regions or between the centre — Igor Kustarin, Director of Regions Development Direction, Agency for Strategic Initiatives .

Today, the main factor is the preservation of federal funding, long-term funding from the Federative subject, as well as the participation and dedicated contribution of the municipality <...> and attracting the people — Marina Kovtun, Governor of Murmansk Region .

Involving the population in urban projects implementation

Communication with people, especially with urbanists, with creative people, with crazy people, with dreamers is extremely important. <...> People feel their ownership of the changes that are taking place. Well, besides this they bring something really constructive — Alexander Brechalov, Head of the Udmurt Republic .

Development of effective PPP models

It is very important to create a business model. This means that the smart city on its own should produce either some GDP for the country, or some revenue in order to support itself — Joe So, Chief Technology Officer Industry Solutions, Huawei Enterprise Business Group, Huawei Technologies Co., Ltd.

We are trying to create a partnership environment, which, in our opinion, helps the mayors overcome difficulties and monitor progress. <...> Therefore, we are trying to build an environment where people can come, experience technology, experience services based on innovation. <...> Private partners should feel that the mayor is on their side, and then together we can make a new service, we can offer this service in our city — Chiara Appendino, Mayor of Turin.

The partnership that we create all together: companies and independent public contractors, local authorities and the state, emphasizes that we are all in the same boat, that we have a common platform — Etienne Guyot, General Director, Paris Chamber of Commerce .

We need substantial financial injections, investments, and we need to always have the opportunity to get them by all possible means, including public-private partnership — Jean-Louis Chaussade, Chief Executive Officer, SUEZ.

Attention to environmental issues

Any smart city should be environmentally friendly. We must live in places we can enjoy. This means that we need to deal with environmental pollution — Jean-Louis Chaussade, Chief Executive Officer, SUEZ.

Expanding city concepts to entire territories

I would like to propose <…> to launch a project not of not just smart cities but smart territories, territories that are above all people-friendly — Sergei Morozov, Governor of Ulyanovsk Region.

The material was prepared by the Russian news agency TASS