The participants thank:
– The President of the Italian Republic, H.E. Mr. Sergio Mattarella, for the Official Plaque of the Italian Republic Presidency to the Infopoverty Conference, awarded on April 2018;

– H.E. Mr. Manlio di Stefano, State Secretary for Foreign Affairs and International Cooperation of Italy for the High Patronage;

– The European Parliament, represented by Hon. Mr. Brando Benifei and Mr. Bruno Marasà, Director of the European Parliament Liaison Office in Milan for hosting a parallel session

– The High Representatives of the Governments of:

Italy, H.E. Amb. Mrs. Mariangela Zappia,; Japan, H.E. Amb. Mr. Toshiya Hoshino; Egypt, H.E. Amb. Mr. Hicham El Nagib; Niger, H.E. Amb. Mr. Inoussa Ousseini,


– The UN Agencies delegates: UNESCO, Mr. Ricardo de Guimaraes Pint; UNHabitat, Mr. Chris Williams; IDLO, Mr. Patrizio Civili; UNDESA, Mrs. Makiko Tagashira; World Bank, Mr. Saurabh Dani; UNCCD, Mr. Melchiade Bukuru; – OCCAM for the organization and the Christopher D. Smithers Foundation for the partnership


The participants appreciate:
The successful stories of Infopoverty World Conference which from 2001 achieved results by stressing opportunities progressively opened by the digital revolution for disadvantage people and providing them with adequate ICTs solutions, (as ICT villages, UN Millennium village in Madagascar, World Food Security e-Center, E-MedMed program for telemedicine, Infopoverty platform for digital services and etc.)
the previous IWC Declarations as guidelines to understand the role of e-services4dev, the mechanism of the digital revolution waves, and how the transfer of knowledge and of adequate technologies could accelerate the achievement of SDGs, and face the challenge of “How smart cities can fight poverty eliminating slums and promoting smart villages for rural development”, the theme of this 19th edition. 

The statements from government representatives :

H.E. Manlio Di Stefano, Undersecretary for Foreign Affairs Ministry and International Cooperation of Italy speaks regarding the impact of the technological innovation and ICTs in creating new jobs, eliminating poverty through the application of a citizenship basic income as well as increasing investments in human capital, and promoting new energy policy through the provision of clean energy locally to moderate the climate change also creating a circular economy that considers waste a resource: these actions are the key to make the Smart Cities more human centered and sustainable.

H.E. Toshiya Hoshino, Japanese Ambassador to the UN, suggests a road maps consisting in the integration of technological innovation into national development goals, in order to assure a development of smart cities done by new Society 5.0, inspired by SDGs and by using technologies such as AI and big data to provide services not only at the urban population but also to people living in rural areas so as to also promote rural communities.

H.E. Hesham El Nakib, Ambassador Extraordin. of Egypt in NY, stated that Egypt believes that every single citizen has the right to have a proper housing and promotes this idea through great investments in the building of new cities and infrastructures. This mega project will attract investments, boost the economy, eliminate slums and guarantee comfortable and affordable houses for all the national population. Egypt as President of the African Union is committed to contribute in the awakening of Africa by promoting mega continental projects which will rehabilitate the society and reduce poverty.

H.E. Brando Benifei, EU Parliamentary, underlined that digitalization is a key tool to quicken the achievement of SDGs, nobody is truly left behind. In order to realize this idea, the EU adopted a resolution on digitalization and development to reduce poverty through technology promoting EU program such as Horizon 2020.

The contribution from UN organizations:

Ricardo do Guimaraes Pinto – UNESCO has the conviction that ICTs must be used to provide education for all. This goal is reachable with the effort and the action of interactive instruments and guidelines, in order to create map educational situations, to formulate an easy access to ICTs programs and master plans with their governments.

Chris Williams, UN-Habitat, focusing his interest in the urban development as a way to achieve SDGs: urbanization is the ultimate trend of the last decades, and it led to arise many issues as poverty, inequality and climate change. The focus must be on the environmental and social-friendly way to facilitate the urban development.

Naroa Zurutuza, UNICEF Innovation, laying the foundation for investment in internet connectivity through Project Connect to ensure that every child has equal access to information, opportunity and choice. The initiative leverages machine learning techniques and satellite imagery to automatically map school locations and connectivity at scale.

Makiko Tagashira – UN DESA aims to make people aware of the increasing inequality gap between rich and poor, urban and rural communities. If we don’t take actions, empowering integrations, the inequality would spread wider and deeper.

Djordje Djordjevic, Deputy of Patrizio Civili – IDLO realises that the challenging topic not only is about Smart Cities or ICT villages, but also on how tools for both systems could be integrated. Binarity urban-rural has potentially stronger significance than years ago. We see that in terms of election, political movements, and also in communities, where everyone has to address periphery. The goal is to study and become more aware about how ICTs can influence both dynamics, how both urban and rural tools can be integrated.

Alberto Padova- UN DESA, says that social exclusion is a visible reality in cities but smart cities are only smart if they are truly inclusive of all people, including people with disabilities and elders. He also focused on the fact that a growing number of private organizations are showing a great interest in sustainable projects and taking social issues in consideration in their investments decisions therefore the governments should work as to help them.

Melchiade Bukuru- UNCCD focused on the issues of the land degradation in order to achieve the SDGs. The majority of the main social issues arise from the degraded lands.

Saurabh Dani – World Bank emphasized the initiative on resilient homes and design challenges that focused on reducing the risk of damage and enable rapid reconstruction after a natural disaster as a way to avoid growth of slums after a natural disaster.

The proposals emerged from the debate by:

Pierpaolo Saporito, OCCAM and Infopoverty president, presented the SmartBox, specifically engineered to combat poverty and poor living conditions by providing energy, clean water, sewage, TLC connectivity, computers and devices able to share digital services: e-learning, telemedicine, food security, e-governance, in order to contribute to create a basic welfare for all.

Aliye Celik – Consortium for Sustainable Urbanization, held a speech in which she examined the impact of information, communication technology on cities now and in the future. It looked at how advancing technology can be used in new development plans to achieve the sustainable development goals, through investments for sustainability.

George Hara – Alliance Forum Foundation suggested to shift from Shareholder capitalism to Public Interest capitalism, as a mean to solve the income disparity in our societies and eradicate poverty. Nowadays big companies’ profits normally and totally goes to shareholders, which gain returns more than the profits of the major companies. The main consequences of the shareholder capitalism are that middle class gradually disappear, with a larger sector of poor people, and democracy can’t work in the situation of crime and violence that would eventually rise. PI capitalism would made increase the value of a company only when it successfully contributes to all its stakeholders and environment connected.

Nikki Smithers, President of Smithers Foundation, illustrated the results achieved to implement mental health in rural and urban communities and confirms the Founfation’s commitment to sustain Infopoverty Program actions as a legacy of Mr. Christopher Smithers’ mission, and giving thanks for the important Tribute shared.

Mauro Decca – ST Foundation with propose the project Digital Unify, applied in the UN Millennium Village of Sambaina, able to provide internet and new technologies access as well as informatics literacy.

Cesare Casati of the magazine ARCA expressed his support to the SDGs, promoting the best urban solution integrated with the promotion of rural communities.

Eugene Grant, the Mayor of Seat Pleasant, Maryland, presented an Implementation of Smart City project, focusing on the fourth and the eleventh SDGs goal, as a model to guarantee clean air and reducing waste.

Ivan Shumkov Academy Build Association presented the result of the competition of low cost resilients houses, as concrete proposal to fate the disaster emergency recovering the population in danger.

Hipolito Arriaga Pote, The Gobernador Nacional Indigena, explained the project that aims to build platforms to bridge the indigenous people of Mexico to the global economy, so that nobody is left behind.

Shinichi Yamanaka – The N High School Kadokawa Dwango Co. illustrated the new Japanese school system that uses ICTs in order to provide high quality education at a low cost and post-graduation working opportunities.

Rehan Chaudry – Altrinsic suggested how to overcome disparity by addressing issues like education, renewable energy, investments in developing countries and urbanization. Smart city technologies and artificial intelligence generate a large amount of benefits especially in emerging markets: Intelligent infrastructure and Automation implications on Development purposes wants to focalize in this direction, mainly in the education issues.

Pietro Piccinetti – EXCO2019, invited the participant to Fiera Roma conference and exhibition, dedicated to the innovative solutions provided by international agencies, governments, NGOs and financial institutions, in favor of the Africa development.

Hassan Ghazal – The Moroccan/International Society for Telemedicine and eHealth, focused on the impact of eHealth on quality care in low-setting contexts, presenting examples such as tele-ecographic project with mobile ultrasound technology started in Morocco in 2014, connecting rural isolated areas to advanced urban health centers, and the Emedmed collaborative project for training and high-tech job creation in Health in the Mediterranean space.

Mikio Kimura – Torus presented a project with satellite and real estate registration data to survey a city development more efficiently, with the help of artificial intelligence and deep learning.

Makoto Goda – Nippon Biodiesel Fuel Co. presented the project new credit for unknown farmers: an opening of an information window between rural villages and Tokyo; the project reverse innovation for rural area in Japan, that consists in local currency based on local energy with traditional knowledge.

Makoto Okubo – Nippon Life’s vision on healthcare business consist in a “Paradigm shift” from protection to prevention and value added services contributing to extend customers’ healthy life span. Providing healthcare programs like telemedicine, with specific technologies tools, allows to help people making aware of their health conditions also in rural areas.

Manuel Gurrola Flores – Quimica Lucava presented a solution to help farmers with digital services using apps for mobile, able to increase the production and the commerce for the rural development.

Joseph Di Pasquale’s OCCAM DesignGroup focusing on how design wants to share the benefits of innovation, making new technologies affordable, present the new robotic building 3Dtech solution that multiply the capacity to turn slums into resilient houses faster and at low cost.

After large discussion, the participants converge in the following declaration:

NO CITY CAN BE DECLARED SMART IF IT DOESN’T TAKE CHARGE OF THE ELIMINATION OF SLUMS, THE ERADICATION OF POVERTY AND THE PROMOTION OF RURAL COMMUNITIES.

In order to realize this concept, the participants highlighted these proposed solutions:

a) Elimination of slums

3D new construction system, which is able to build a low-cost range of hundred dwellings per day by recycling the waste. This method can also provide fitted materials for auto construction for communities with consolidated municipal plans strategy.

b) Promotion of rural communities

SmartBox elaborated in the ambit of Infopoverty Program and which able to assure basic welfare for everybody as a way to close the gap between low income and high income countries across the world. In particular sustain the relaunch of the UN Millennium Village of Sambaina (Madagascar) where since 2007 start succesfull applications of e-learning and telemedicine.

c) Eradication of poverty
the massive use of e-services, such as e-learning, telemedicine, food security, e-governance etc., provided by Specialized Institutions such as the World Health & Food Security e-Center, validated at COP22, in order to assure a basic welfare to all in need.

Finally, the participant launched an

APPEAL

to everybody, who’s interested and able, to join us in this task and to implement it so that to give an effective and solid contribution to the achievement of SDGs 2030 in terms of new entrepreneurship, promoting job creation for young generations, promoting gender equality and make sure that billions of people can emerge from poverty as a powerful energy that humanity can use to guarantee a self-development in peace and democracy.
The conference gives mandate to OCCAM, as the acting agency of the Infopoverty Program, to continue serving as the Permanent Secretariat of the Conference, in order to realise what has been decided, and organize the next XX Infopoverty World Conference, on this subject:

FROM SMART CITY TO DIGITAL SOCIETY