IBM experts to work with council

22:32, Nov 14 2012

Christchurch has been selected as one of 31 cities to receive a grant to drive economic development.

IBM said today Christchurch had been selected for one of their "Smarter Cities Challenge" grants for 2013.

As a result, a team of six IBM experts from the US will be assigned to Christchurch early next year and spend three weeks working with Christchurch City Council and the Canterbury Development Corporation (CDC).

The challenge team will address urban issues including economic development, transportation, education, energy, public safety, urban planning and health care.

The work they will do will be pro-bono.

CDC chief executive Tom Hooper said he hoped the project would create a "smart framework" to help create opportunities for both collaboration and commercialisation of ideas.


"By understanding and implementing such a framework, it is anticipated that the city would generate higher levels of economic growth across all sectors following a sustained period of earthquake-related rebuild activity." 

Mayor Bob Parker hoped the challenge would help "create a dynamic and innovative society".

"Today's announcement also neatly reinforces the Lonely Planet ranking for the city at six among the world's top 10 cities for its ability to rise from the rubble with a breath-taking mix of spirit, determination and flair."

Of the cities selected for 2013, Christchurch was the only one from the Australasia or Oceania regions.

The Press