14 June 2011
Australia-Vietnam project wins IBM award
A project exploring how advanced technology, media, and architectural design can play a role in building a smarter, interconnected city has won a global award.
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Students from RMIT University in Melbourne and Ho Chi Minh City, Vietnam, will learn to apply cross-disciplinary design, social, and technical approaches and use local, real-world examples to evaluate new urban planning and development options for services such as transportation, energy and rubbish and recycling.
A team of five RMIT academics won a $US10,000 Smarter Planet Faculty Innovation award from IBM for their work on the project, "Two Cities as a Living Lab".
They are Dr Flora Salim (lead chief investigator), Dr Susu Nousala, Dr Margaret Hamilton, Dr Marsha Berry and Associate Professor Jane Burry (chief investigators).
City infrastructures can now rely on a wealth of new information and technologies, enabling them to sense and respond intelligently to the needs of their growing populations.
Dr Salim, a Research Fellow in RMIT’s Spatial Information Architecture Laboratory (SIAL), said: "Cities are becoming more and more connected but how people deal with the data is so different.
"We’ve developed a new curriculum, with dual teaching for students in two campuses and two cities.
"We want the students to start corresponding and learning about their two different worlds and how to share data."
Jim Corgel, general manager of IBM Academic and Developer Relations, said: "We need to focus on developing more advanced skills so that students around the world are equipped to tackle real-world issues when they enter the workforce.
"The work of the RMIT team and 49 other award recipients should help change the face of education by enabling students to work on pressing issues facing cities today – and at the same time prepare them for leadership in industries like healthcare and transportation."