Smart city responses to COVID-19: digital solutions

In episode 15 of the FCL podcast, Calum Handforth, advisor at Smart Cities and Digitalisation in the UNDP Centre shares his insights on how technology can facilitate COVID-​19 response and recovery

September 10, 2020
ETH Zurich

Pandemics are not new, and cities have battled several of them time and again. But this time around, we have a new tool in our arsenal – digital technologies that are helping smart cities to detect, diagnose, monitor, and respond to the COVID-​19 virus.

In the first installment of this three-​part series, Calum Handforth, advisor of the Smart Cities and Digitalisation programme in the UNDP Centre shares his insights on how technology can facilitate COVID-​19 response and recovery. Beyond the employment of technological advancements, how can cities around the world maximise the use of digital tools to improve pandemic response?

The three-​part series on smart city responses to the COVID-​19 pandemic from the perspective of technology, governance, and planning, is presented by FCL and the UNDP Global Centre for Technology, Innovation and Sustainable Development.

Calum Handforth has a wide-​ranging smart cities and digitalisation background having worked on the delivery, strategy, and management of a range of innovation projects and programmes across Sub-​Saharan Africa, and South and South-​East Asia. He also has worked on advising and scaling tech-​driven enterprises, including startups focusing on secure networks and connectivity, digital identity, and safety and security.

Calum has drafted and led legislation, policy, and strategy to rollout smart cities; delivered connectivity programmes (3G, 4G, and 5G pilots) and explored Internet-​of-Things-related projects. He has also worked in government, strategy consulting, and international development.

More widely, Calum has built strong expertise in driving and measuring the success and impact of smart city, digitalisation, and broader innovation projects and programmes - particularly in lower-​income settings.


This article was originally published on ETH Zurich.

FCL Podcast: Smart City Responses to COVID-​19: Digital Solutions

Listen to Episode 15