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Press Release

September 16, 2021

Smart Country Convention – Special Edition: A wide range of topics on E-Government and Smart Cities

 Virtual trade fair and congress for the public sector on 26 and 27 October

 Theme days on E-Government and smart cities / smart regions

 Speakers: Margrethe Vestager, Malu Dreyer, Jens Spahn, Julia Klöckner and many more

When can citizens electronically contact their local authorities? And when will we be living in smart cities? These are some of the questions the Smart Country Convention will examine on 26 and 27 October. The trade fair and congress, which focuses on the digitisation of the public sector, is co-organised by Germany’s digital association Bitkom and Messe Berlin. Its patron is the Federal Ministry of the Interior, Building and Community. This year, the Smart Country Convention is taking place as a Special Edition again and as an entirely virtual event. The programme features lectures, panel discussions, best practices and digital trends, which can be followed as live streams or by video on demand after the event.

The emphasis this year is on E-Government and smart cities. 26 October is E-Gov Day, when the focus will be on topics such as local government after the pandemic, digital sovereignty, implementation of the Online Access Act (OZG), electronic identification and IT security in local government. 27 October is Smart City Day. Topics discussed on the three stages will include urban and rural mobility, GAIA-X in municipalities, digital inner cities and digitising the German Bundeswehr. The new Smart City Index, a digital ranking of major German cities, will also be presented. The forums on digital cities and digital rural areas are also taking place again.

EU Commissioner Vestager and Health Minister Jens Spahn among the many speakers

Numerous speakers have agreed to take part in the Smart Country Convention. They include EU Commissioner for Competition and Digital Affairs Margrethe Vestager, Serbia’s Prime Minister Ana Brnabić, Rhineland Palatinate’s State Premier Malu Dreyer, Germany’s Federal Ministers Jens Spahn and Julia Klöckner, Austria’s Federal Minister for Digital and Economic Affairs Dr. Margarete Schramböck, Hesse’s State Minister for Digital Strategy and Development Kristina Sinemus, as well as BMI State Secretaries Dr. Markus Richter and Anne Katrin Bohle.

Furthermore, the partners of the Smart Country Convention will present solutions and examples of best practices concerning digitisation in the public sector. Those taking part include Accenture, Bechtle, Bundesdruckerei, BWI, Google Cloud, Huawei, SAP, Fraunhofer, Telekom and Smart City Berlin.

Smart Country Startup Award for the most innovative solutions

The Special Edition taking place this year will also present the Smart Country Startup Award again. The award honours outstanding innovations in the categories Smart City and E-Government. With the Smart Country Startup Award, Get Started, the startup initiative of the digital association Bitkom and exclusive partners are supporting newly established companies, talented entrepreneurs and visionary ideas surrounding digitisation in the public sector.