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Smart Cities Council launches call for Challenge Grants

The White House wants to help cities accelerate the move to becoming smart
The White House wants to help cities accelerate the move to becoming smart

Winning cities will receive a tailored one-day Readiness Workshop

The grants aim to inspire innovation, inclusion and investment in their city

The Smart Cities Council, the world’s largest smart cities network, is inviting applications for cities to apply for the Smart Cities Council Readiness Challenge Grant.


Five American cities will receive a grant in 2017 to inspire innovation, inclusion and investment in their city. The grant, which will help cities apply smart technologies, is part of the current White House commitment to accelerate the development of smart cities in the US. The application process will close on 31 December 2016.


“Our members and advisors are the world’s leading smart city practitioners,” said Jesse Berst, chairman of the Smart Cities Council. “We are bringing those experts together to help these cities craft action plans that are innovative, inclusive and ’investment-grade.’ And then we are donating products and services worth hundreds of thousands of dollars to jump-start their efforts.”


The Readiness Challenge Grant programme provides a significant contribution of professional services as well as access to best practices from some of the world’s top smart city practitioners and access to the expertise of leading smart cities technology providers in a vendor-neutral setting. It also provides the opportunity to learn from peer cities and gain international visibility on the Council’s website and newsletter.


Winning cities will receive a tailored one-day Readiness Workshop, where Smart Cities Council experts, members and advisors will assist in building or enhancing a smart city roadmap. This will take into account immediate priorities, long-term goals and current use of technologies.


The cities will also benefit from receiving key products and services from Council member companies, including:


  • Ameresco will provide consulting to help optimise smart street lighting;
  • AT&T will provide up to 25 AT&T Internet of Things starter kits;
  • CH2M and Qualcomm will collaborate to host a one-day follow-on workshop to develop and deploy a smart cities ecosystem;
  • Computing Technology Industry Association (CompTIA) will provide free training, software, and access to its technology educational materials;
  • Dow Building and Construction will provide consultation on optimising building design as part of a smart cities ecosystem;
  • IDC will assess each city’s progress through a comprehensive Smart City Maturity Benchmark;
  • Sensus will provide a city-wide hosted communications network free-of-charge for one year;
  • Telit will provide each city free access to its Telit IoT platform;
  • TM Forum will help cities assess progress through its Smart City Maturity and Benchmark Model;
  • Transdev will provide up to three days of technical assistance to investigate new and more efficient urban mobility options.


An application request can be made at


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