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Ode to September

The autumn heralds new opportunities, fresh ideas, exciting projects and meaningful collaborations

Gourds, leaves and digital technology; what a combo!
Gourds, leaves and digital technology; what a combo!

September 1 is one of my favourite dates in the calendar. It ignites not just a new season but also one that smacks of new opportunities, fresh ideas, exciting projects, and meaningful collaborations, inspiring learning. You can see that I’ve never (sadly) grown out of that back to school feeling.


I am inspired by clever thinking and problem solving – the main reason why I am so engrossed with smart cities and the future of urban living. Just looking at our news this week is a fantastic testament to the ingenuity of human beings – all of which is a manifestation of hope and the belief that things can get better. Generally speaking when humans are faced with huge difficulties, the best is unleashed. Generally speaking.


One of our featured stories this week Mini Living is a great embodiment of new seasonal promise. Launched by BMW car brand Mini, this is a long-term research project that seeks to address the most pressing challenges of city dwelling by using design to build relationships that support community harmony. You can catch this at the South Bank London between 16 – 24 September. See you there!


Talking of inspiring research, the UK’s Electric Nation project is to reveal findings to show how smart charging can tackle the growth of electric vehicles on the electricity network, which is, of course, a vital part in the transition from fossil to clean fuels.


Then what about DEWA exploring the possibility of solar roads, in Dubai’s bid to become a smart, integrated and connected city?


In the wider sphere, there’s enough mind-blowing technological innovation and experimentation about to fuel late night, wine soaked debate into the early dawn light.


Elon Musk (a favourite) has been given the go-ahead to begin tunnelling under LA in the name of Hyperloop and subterranean roads, and what about growing your own meat from companies such as Beyond Meat and synthetic foodstuffs from Impossible foods? Then there are hot solar cells, which are twice as efficient as conventional photovoltaics and keep working at night plus 3D printing from a mobile phone. The list goes on and covers just about every industry.


New technology offers so much potential to do good and a myriad of reasons to do so. The autumn and its promise has never felt so important.


Melony Rocque

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