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Guest article VKU: The role of municipal companies in the digital transformation

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Photo: Unsplash

What role does the municipal sector play in the digital transformation?

Municipal companies have invaluable local expertise. They know the specific needs of their local authorities and are therefore able to develop customised solutions. Whether it is the digital networking of energy and water supplies or the laying of digital infrastructure in the telecommunications sector - they know what is needed locally, what works and what does not.

Another important aspect is investment in digital technologies. Municipal companies are already investing in innovative projects: This improves the quality of life locally and reduces costs in the long term. One example of this is the introduction of smart grids, which not only save energy but also increase security of supply and make cities future-proof. A key element of the digital transformation is the use of the latest technologies such as artificial intelligence. AI can help to optimise processes and use resources more efficiently. For example, algorithms can monitor water consumption in real time and identify weak points in the system. This not only saves water, but also protects the environment.

Municipal companies also play a key role in the data economy. They collect and manage large volumes of data that are essential for the development of smart cities. It is important that data protection is always guaranteed and that the data is used for the benefit of the community. "Digitalisation and AI thrive on data. We need clear rules for their use in order to create acceptance," demands Ingbert Liebing, Managing Director of the VKU.

Municipal companies have recognised that they can only improve their services and develop business models at the same time through new approaches. Many utilities are now working with start-ups or setting up their own in order to jointly develop solutions and quickly put them into practice.

The challenges are great, but with the support of municipal companies, we can successfully overcome them and shape a smart, liveable future. Ingbert Liebing: "We want digital participation, not digital division. Digitalisation should serve people and make life easier."

Further information on the topic of digital transformation and the role of the municipal sector can be found at:

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