Emilie de Rosenroll, CEO of South Island Prosperity Project, will travel to Shanghai this week to meet with global leaders at the 2018 World Artifical Intelligence Conference. Photo contributed

South Island Prosperity Project sends leaders to Shanghai for AI conference

People talk about flying cars but there are day-to-day lifestyle improvements that can come from AI: SIPP CEO

When the South Island Prosperity Project (SIPP) was shortlisted for the smart cities prize in June, it established Greater Victoria as a global leader in development and sustainability.

To continue that work, SIPP CEO Emilie de Rosenroll will travel to Shanghai this week to share some of those trade secrets at the the 2018 World Artificial Intelligence Conference, focusing primarily on urban development.

“We’re definitely putting Greater Victoria on the map,” says de Rosenroll, who will tavel with Dallas Gislason, SIPP director of economic development. “I feel like there is a great deal of optimism and momentum in the region.”

That optimism might be credited to the recognition SIPP has brought to the South Island after being shortlisted for the $10-million grant in the Canada Smart Cities Challenge, aiming to improve daily life for residents through innovation, data and connected technology.

RELATED: Greater Victoria coalition shortlisted for $10 million in funding

But, what does it all mean?

“[AI] is driving more convenience to people,” de Rosenroll explains. “People can talk about flying cars but there are definitely day-to-day lifestyle improvements that can come from this kind of science and technology.”

The journey to the conference – where innovators like Elon Musk will be in attendance – is a follow-up to the trip Mayor Lisa Helps and other community leaders took in 2017, de Rosenroll says.

Challenges like traffic congestion, emergency response, tracking the environmental health and efficiency of infrastructure is increasingly being managed with AI. Scientists, entrepreneurs, business leaders and government officials will meet during the three-day conference to discuss the emergency technology and its trends.

RELATED: Tesla internship calls for UVic designer of electric ‘Caboost’

AI has the power to improve our lives, de Rosenroll says, noting there can be a dark side to it. But, she says, it’s happening, “so how do we future-proof our economy?”

The goal for the South Island is to get service providers on board for easier access to what they call “multimodal transportation.” For example, data copuld be used to develop apps to combine bus routes with bike share companies and/or ride hailing services, essentially using these systems more efficiently.

“Data is knowledge and knowledge can be power, but you need to build the systems that manage and monitor it in the right way,” de Rosenroll says. “Our data should be managed like a natural resource.”

RELATED: Asia trade mission will strengthen Victoria tourism, local economy: mayor

Still, the SIPP recognizes this is about making it real for people, she continues. To that end, the economic development agency will soon roll out a public engagement campaign, part of which will include animated short videos to “unpack somewhat abstract ideas.”

For de Rosenroll, this phase of the work, the “second wave of smart cities,” means mid-size cities like those across the CRD are now starting to learn lessons from bigger metropolis’ like Shanghai where these technologies are already in place.

“These are the huge issues of our time that we’re not able to deal with as fast as the technology is coming,” she says.

kristyn.anthony@vicnews.com

Just Posted

Cross-examination begins for Oak Bay dad accused of killing daughters

Andrew Berry is charged in the deaths of six-year-old Chloe and four-year-old Aubrey in 2017

Arenas, fitness centre ready for action after significant flood at Saanich recreation centre

Library branch, archives remain closed after Thursday night flood

Camosun mechanical engineering project solve real-world problems

Showcase included projects that confound conventional wisdom, garner industry interest

Speculation tax forces sale of Oak Bay’s ‘Tulip House’

Bob and Jan Fleming selling their retirement home famous for its thousands of tulips

BC SPCA overwhelmed with cats, kittens needing homes

Large number of cruelty investigations, plus normal ‘kitten season’ to blame

B.C. sockeye returns drop as official calls 2019 ‘extremely challenging’

Federal government says officials are seeing the same thing off Alaska and Washington state

Expanded support to help B.C. youth from care attend university still falling short

Inadequate support, limited awareness and eligibility restrictions some of the existing challenges

Ethnic media aim to help maintain boost in voting by new Canadians

Statistics Canada says new Canadians made up about one-fifth of the voting population in 2016

Dog attacked by river otters, Penticton owner says

Marie Fletcher says her dog was pulled underwater by four river otters in the Penticton Channel

POLL: Should there be a ban on gas-powered leaf blowers?

We’ve all heard them, and most likely cursed them under our breath.… Continue reading

Greater Victoria wanted list for the week of Aug. 23

Greater Victoria Crime Stoppers is seeking the public’s help in locating the… Continue reading

Wife charged in husband’s death in Sechelt

Karin Fischer has been charged with second-degree murder in the death of her husband, Max

B.C. Hydro applies for rare cut in electricity rates next year

Province wrote off $1.1 billion debt to help reverse rate increase

Most Read