Been There, Binh Duong: Helping Conduct the Orchestra in Vietnam’s Aspiring Intelligent Community

Bui_Cong_Duy.jpg
Bui Cong Duy

I am on my way back to Vietnam, where the new city of Binh Duong is proudly hosting its second Smart City conference, a Hackathon and performing a multi-committee review of their submission – and the results – from the nation’s first nomination for a city to become one of ICF’s Smart21.

While they did not reach the Smart21 for 2018, they are celebrating the fact that they mobilized to begin the climb up that hill in an attempt to become Vietnam’s first Intelligent Community. And their submission was quite impressive, according to our Analysts.

Can they do it? Can they get all the way up the hill?

They certainly can. The will is there, the support is there at all levels and they understand something that their great violinist, Bui Cong Duy could share with them.

Theo một cách nào đó, việc xây dựng cộng đồng thông minh cũng giống như việc chơi đàn violin ở nơi công cộng và dần dần học cách chơi loại nhạc cụ này một cách thật tài tình.

It literally means, “Building an Intelligent Community is like playing a violin in public and learning how to play the instrument brilliantly as one goes along.”

smart_city_EIPO_Eng-01-01.jpgThis will be the new phrase in Binh Duong, and throughout the Becamex organization and state agency, which is the real push behind the effort. Their effort also has an ICF mentor. Binh Duong has enlisted the wise guidance of the 2011 Intelligent Community of the Year (Eindhoven, The Netherlands) and its International Projects Office.

In a Buddhist country like Vietnam, the idea of working as perfectly as possible alongside the unknown of each moment, each day, as you hit each musical note in the Life of a culture is not unfamiliar. Once they get this concept down psychologically among the management and citizens, the rest is about collaboration, implementing the Six Criteria (the Method of ICF) and the hard work of building a knowledge economy. They have already started with a new university and the nation’s first genuine accelerator operational already.

The Vietnamese have shown little fear of challenges in their history. This one may be the greatest because it truly involves moving from a primarily agricultural nation to one that is embracing the use of knowledge as a tool for economic competitiveness. This transformation has given many a giant economy a belly-ache. It is brain science because it is designed to unlock intellectual power, something humans seem to struggle with.

Surprisingly, the brand new community, which will have one million people living and working when completed, was never more than 25% away from the leaders of every category in this year’s Smart21 Analysts’ assessment. This is quite good, especially for a nation that before now had never had a community in the ICF Awards hunt.

I personally look forward to this trip, where I give the Plenary Keynote on Monday in Thu Dau Mot City because I will again see young Vietnamese leaders, like Dr. Viet Long, who came home from lives in Europe and elsewhere to rebuild their nation and create an Intelligent Community.

Like Bui Cong Duy performing Mendelsohn, this is the kind of music that leads to the symphony of success along the road to ICF’s Smart21.

I will have more to report (my review !) upon my return from Binh Duong.

Co-Founder of the Intelligent Community Forum Official ICF Twitter Page: @Newcommunities
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