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Press Release

October 28, 2021

Smart Country Convention spans a bridge between local government and the digital economy

 7,600 users, 160 speakers and 90 partners took part in the virtual event

 Programme can be accessed on demand

 Next Smart Country Convention will take place from 18 to 20 October 2022

With more than 7,600 participants, over 90 partners and featuring 160 speakers on three stages, the virtual Smart Country Convention came to a close today. Among the highlights were keynote speeches by EU Commissioner for Competition and Digital Affairs Margrethe Vestager and Austria’s Federal Minister for Digital and Economic Affairs Margarete Schramböck. Also taking part were Federal Ministers Julia Klöckner and Jens Spahn, Rhineland Palatinate’s State Premier Malu Dreyer, Federal Government Commissioner for Digitalisation Dorothee Bär and Federal CIO Dr. Markus Richter. “Over the past two days the Smart Country Convention impressively showed what the digital transformation of the public sector can achieve and what is required to implement this transition in local government and public services“, was how Jens Heithecker, executive vice president of Messe Berlin, summarised the two-day event. For those unable to take part directly, the programme can be accessed on demand. “Germany must ride the digital wave and take bold steps to speed up the digital transformation of local government“, said Dr. Bernhard Rohleder, managing director of Bitkom. “The digital transformation of the public sector is a task that political decision-makers, local government, business and society must confront together. The Smart Country Convention brings us closer to a digital world“, he added.

In addition to the Federal Ministry of the Interior, the event was supported mainly by the three leading organisations representing local government – the German Association of Towns and Municipalities, the Association of German Cities, the German County Association, as well as the Association of Municipal Companies (VKU). The Premium partners were Accenture, Bechtle, Bundesdruckerei, BWI, Deutsche Telekom, Dynatrace, Fiware, Google Cloud, Huawei, KPMG, SAP, Smart City Berlin and Fraunhofer. This demonstration of joint support by the representatives of the public sector and the digital economy is unparalleled in Germany. “After two Special Editions we are looking ahead with optimism to next year and holding an in-person event again. As important as the digital transformation is, nothing works without face-to-face meetings – whether for establishing and cultivating professional contacts or presenting innovative products and services as a partner“, Heithecker said.

The Smart Country Convention will be back between 18 and 20 October 2022

In 2022, the Smart Country Convention will be gathering representatives of local government, politics, the digital economy, associations and science for the fifth time. It represents the leading platform for the digital transformation of local government and the public sector in Germany. Additional information on the event is available at www.smartcountry.berlin.

Print-quality press photos of the Smart Country Convention can be downloaded here.