UK’s Bristol wins laurels for its programmable city initiative

The future-friendly city of Bristol received a notable Internet of Things (IoT) award for its programmable city initiative.
Globe Newswire said that the southwest U.K. city recently won the Smart City Award at the World Communications Awards & Internet of Things Awards in London.

The city was recognized for its Bristol is Open project, which is a joint venture between the Bristol City Council and the University of Bristol.

The ambitious initiative is essentially an open “programmable city” project that allows citizens to digitally contribute to the functioning of the city itself.

Specifically, the project creates an experimental high-performance software defined network. It achieves this using wireless networks, mesh networks and dedicated fiber deployed across Bristol.

The project was also hailed for its ability to draw together research organizations, technology companies, government and the public to develop and collaborate on next generation network research.

Bristol is Open included a number of notable partners such as Nokia, the University of Bath and InterDigital among others.

Showing the way for future smart cities

An example of industry involvement comes from wireless systems developer InterDigital which joined the project in late 2015. As part of Bristol is Open, the company capitalized on the project’s city-scale research and development network to determine how future cities can use programmable networks to solve large challenges.

As a result, InterDigital performed a live demonstration of a related video streaming innovation over the Bristol is Open test bed in February 2016.

The recognition of Bristol is Open follows a recent smart city research paper by Siemens Financial Services that identified nearly $7 billion in potential smart city funding.

After looking at private funding sources in 13 countries, the study concluded that the U.K. could rustle up $6.98 billion for smart city projects.

The paper modeled private sector financing opportunities to make up the shortfall in public funds that British smart city projects currently face.

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