The objective of this track is to provide the Masters and PhD students with a platform to share their ideas and research works and get comments and suggestions from the international audience.
The concept of smart cities has progressed beyond its infancy stage in mega-cities of developed countries, where real-life applications of smart public transport, smart homes, and smart lots are in place. However, this is not the case for most cities in Africa, where a host of challenges make the idea of smart cities seem like an unattainable dream. The major obstacles are inadequate baseline physical infrastructures and substandard, unsustainable, and segregated social services.
Mehmood, Ahmad, Yaqoob, Adnane, Imran, and Guizani (2017) define smart cities as a cycle that involves several ICT technologies, development platforms, and sustainability, with evolving citizens, social, technical, and economic key performance indicators. Intelligent cities leverage ICT advances and innovative practices to enhance the quality of life, boost economic growth, maintain a sustainable environment, ensure safety, and streamline urban management.
Since the inception of smart cities, key industries have played a significant role in advancing smart city technologies, also known as dimensions, including Smart Mobility, Smart People, Smart Living, Smart Governance, Smart Economy, and Smart Environment. Community involvement is a common feature among them. Guided by the smart-city vision that focuses on growth without disrupting facilities for future generations, this conference aims to raise awareness in the research community about the need for innovative and contextualized smart-city solutions. Furthermore, the conference aims to promote the utility and impact of smart-city technologies in stimulating economic growth and showcase various technologies that are currently in use in the African context.
We welcome contributions from the following fields and any other topic related to smart cities:
- Theme 1: Framework for Smart City Planning and Management
This theme explores the comprehensive aspects of smart cities, including the concept, technologies, infrastructure, governance, planning, management, citizen engagement, social and environmental sustainability, emerging trends, and potential societal impact. It emphasizes the importance of effective governance models and citizen participation in successful smart city implementation. The integration of smart city solutions into existing urban infrastructures, tailored to the needs of diverse communities, is essential. Additionally, the theme highlights the potential of smart cities to drive economic growth and improve social development.
- Theme 2: Technology Innovations: Internet of Things, Artificial Intelligence, and Data Analytics
2.1 Internet of Things (IoT)
This sub-theme focuses on the foundational role of IoT in implementing smart cities. It covers the connectivity of physical devices to the internet, enabling data collection and sharing. The integration of wireless sensor networks (WSN) enables efficient and automated operations across domains such as transportation, energy, and healthcare.
2.2 Artificial Intelligence (AI) and Machine Learning (ML)
AI and ML have demonstrated their ability to enhance smart city performance and deliver efficient and responsive services. This sub-theme explores the use of ML algorithms, intelligent agents, and real-time data analytics to implement adaptive and dynamic smart city services.
2.3 Data Analytics and Processing
Data analytics and processing play a vital role in smart city development. This sub-theme focuses on collecting, processing, and analyzing large volumes of data from diverse sources, such as IoT devices, sensors, and social media platforms. Real-time insights derived from data analytics support decision-making and improve service delivery across various domains.
- Theme 3: Design Approaches and Categories of Smart Applications Relevant to Africa
This theme is targeted at researchers, policymakers, and industry leaders involved in smart city development, with a focus on applications that enhance the efficiency, sustainability, and livability of cities in Africa. The sub-themes include:
3.1 Sustainable Development through Smart Cities
This sub-theme highlights innovative approaches to integrate renewable energy sources, promote energy efficiency, and reduce carbon emissions. It explores smart urban planning strategies that prioritize sustainable development goals, including green spaces, eco-friendly transportation systems, and optimized resource management. Case studies showcasing successful sustainable development initiatives in African cities are especially encouraged.
3.2 Water-Energy-Food Nexus
This sub-theme addresses the interconnected challenges of water, energy, and food security. It focuses on smart solutions that optimize resource utilization, promote conservation, and ensure equitable distribution. Integration of IoT, data analytics, and automation in water management, agricultural practices, and energy supply in urban areas is explored.
3.3 Governance and Smart Cities
Effective governance models and policies are essential for successful smart city implementation. This sub-theme examines strategies to ensure data privacy, cybersecurity, and citizen engagement. It showcases innovative approaches to citizen participation in decision-making processes, utilizing digital platforms, open data, and inclusive policies.
3.4 Health, Well-being, and Decent Work
This sub-theme focuses on smart healthcare solutions that improve access to quality services, enhance disease surveillance and management, and promote preventive healthcare measures. It explores the use of technology to address public health challenges in African cities, such as infectious diseases and non-communicable diseases. Additionally, it emphasizes the importance of decent work opportunities, inclusive economic growth, and social well-being for all residents.
3.5 Smart Transitions, including Intelligent Transportation Systems and Circular Economy
This sub-theme examines intelligent transportation systems that optimize traffic management, reduce congestion, and improve public transportation networks. It explores circular economy strategies that promote resource efficiency, waste reduction, and sustainable use of materials.
3.6 Resilience and Disaster Management
This sub-theme focuses on enhancing resilience and preparedness in the face of natural disasters through smart city approaches. It explores early warning systems, rapid response mechanisms, and resilient infrastructure. Integration of climate change adaptation and mitigation strategies, such as nature-based solutions and risk assessment tools, is emphasized.
3.8 Cultural Heritage Preservation
Preserving and promoting cultural heritage through smart city solutions is the focus of this sub-theme. It explores digitization efforts, virtual reality experiences, and interactive platforms for cultural tourism. The integration of cultural heritage preservation into urban planning and development, along with the involvement of local communities, cultural institutions, and technology experts, is highlighted.
Papers should be submitted through the EAI ‘Confy+‘ system.
Abstract submissions should be a maximum of 4 pages, including references, figures, tables, and an appendix. Note that submissions are accepted only in PDF format. Please note that a shorter version of already published work will be rejected.
The abstracts will be reviewed and rated for acceptance using the following criteria:
- Relevance to conference vision/topics and attendees
- Applicability of the project in real-world scenarios
- Potential to bring in participants to the conference from different audiences
- The overall quality of the contribution
- Provides a hands-on, collaborative, and/or active learning environment for attendees
Accepted abstracts will be allocated 15 minutes for a presentation at the conference.
Paper submission: 20 November 2023
Notification deadline: 27 November 2023
Camera Ready: 4 December 2023
Master’s and Doctoral Students Track Chair
Dr. Mussa Ally Dida
The Nelson Mandela African Institution of Science and Technology (NM-AIST), Arusha