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About ICF

The Intelligent Community Forum is a think tank that studies the economic and social development of the 21st Century community.  Whether in industrialized or developing nations, communities are challenged to create prosperity, stability and cultural meaning in a world where jobs, investment and knowledge increasingly depend on advances in communications.  For the 21st Century community, connectivity is a double-edge sword: threatening established ways of life on the one hand, and offering powerful new tools to build prosperous, inclusive and environmentally sustainable economies on the other.  ICF seeks to share the best practices of the world's Intelligent Communities in adapting to the demands of the Broadband Economy, in order to help communities everywhere find sustainable renewal and growth.  We conduct research, create conference content, publish information and present annual awards, all in an effort to: 

  Identify and explain the emergence of the broadband economy and its impact at the local level.  This is the new global economy emerging from the deployment of broadband on the international, national and local levels around the world.  The broadband economy challenges us all, whether we live in a thriving metropolitan area or a poor rural region.  In the broadband economy, adaptability outweighs legacy; skills, not resources, are the key to future; and innovation, not location, creates a competitive advantage. 
     
  Research and share best practices by communities in adapting to the changing economic environment and positioning their citizens and businesses to prosper.  There is no "one best model" for economic development in the broadband economy.  Each successful community develops strategies based on its unique history and challenges, and overcomes specific local obstacles to put programs into place.  But successful strategies share many common elements, and communities can learn enormous amounts from each other's successes and failures, and by sharing with others, speed their own development as well.
     
  Celebrate the achievements of communities that have overcome challenges to claim a place in the economy of the 21st century.  Communities around the world are making huge strides to overcome legacy challenges, develop strategies and put effective programs and policies into place.  ICF celebrates leadership through an Awards program that searches the globe for the best models of each year and publicizes their achievements.

For ICF, a "community" is a town, village, city or metropolitan area - or occasionally a state, province or other larger region - that has a distinct identity and the ability to act in a unified manner as a single entity.  Its citizens and businesses identify themselves with that community enough to set aside small-scale differences and cooperate for the good of the whole. 

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