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Education Is Part of Smart City

Prayogo Ryza - 12 June 2015

Smart City isn’t as simple as it looks. It’s not only about the tech and citizens, but also covers the whole city’s system, including education.

The concept is on the spotlight nowadays. Some IT giants like Ericsson and Huawei declared that they’re ready to contribute in the concept implementation in Bandung and Jakarta, as both cities are reported to be ready for being the concept’s prototypes.

Besides being the leader of tech-savvy cities, as ridwan Kamil (Bandung’s Major) and Basuki Tjahaja Purnama (DKI Jakarta’s Governor, popularly known as Ahok) do share a vision of fixing their cities through technology.

In Bandung, apart from Bandung Command Center and online licensing services, Ridwan Kamil is also preparing Bandung version of “Silicon Valley” in Gedebage, which is envisioned as Bandung Technopolis. Same thing happens in Jakarta as the government has launched a number of apps that go with the concept already. However, there’s one thing as significant as infrastructure and technology; education.

I personally imagine smart city as a city in which all the components are categorized as “smart”, from the government to services, citizens, and, obviously, education.

Education system must be more innovative and creative

The education system in smart cities must be more innovative, creative, and steps ahead of other “less smart” cities. By this, I’m saying that the curriculum and all education levels must be set differently. Starting from the standard, curriculum, to supporting facilities. Besides generating smart citizens, smart city is also expected to give birth to many innovative inventions.

In Silicon Valley, there’s a non-profit institution called Silicon Valley Education Foundation which provides programs and resources that can be utilized by students and teachers to deepen thei knowledge in science, math, and tech. I imagine the same concept to be applied here in Indonesia.

Ridwan Kamil and Ahok need to start making education as their top priority. The shortest way is by keep on improving the quality of education and research at universities in each city (Jakarta and Bandung).

Government’s supporting facilities are also expected to trigger the birth of classy researches among universities. After improving the quality at university level, the enhancement must be implemented deeper as low as the elementary level.

We of course wish that this smart city issue won’t merely be someone’s “project”. Let’s hope that the concept really is our saviour to overcome problems in big cities in Indonesia. Ridwan Kamil and Ahok are still in the right track to make it happen. However, without the right support and suggestion, it’s about time to see them failing.

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