Mobile Robot Integration Partnership Announced by Intelligent Community Forum and Urban Robotics Foundation

(January 23, 2024 – New York City, NY, USA & Toronto, ON, Canada) – The Intelligent Community Forum (ICF) and the Urban Robotics Foundation (URF) announced today a partnership aiming to share best practices on robot integration in communities by local governments around the world. Through the partnership, ICF and URF will exchange content, expertise, and communication resources with each other’s networks, and collaborate on content including a webinar and an online course to be released later this year.

The Urban Robotics Foundation (URF) is a global, non-profit organization that is bringing together stakeholders who are interested in the opportunities and challenges of public-area mobile robots (PMRs); members help shape the new open, international standard for these devices. Bern Grush, Executive Director of URF, is the originator and project lead for the ISO draft technical standard 4448. His expertise informs their deep understanding of the multiple overlapping city systems and stakeholders impacted by the deployment of PMRs.

Bern states, “URF is excited to partner with ICF and to engage with their community members on the journey to safely integrating mobile robots on city sidewalks and public spaces. ICF’s framework to enhance municipal readiness while ensuring inclusive societies is an ideal match with the work of URF.”

ICF is a research, consulting, training and membership organization pioneering new paths to economic and community development through digital technology for cities, counties, and regions around the world. In a world dominated by digital, ICF helps communities create innovative and growing economies, inclusive societies, and affirming cultures open to the world. Its work is based on 25 years of research with over 200 communities that have created a unique, data-driven approach to development that puts citizens first while tapping the enormous economic and social potential of technology. ICF delivers value through training and coaching programs, membership, networking community certification, events and an international awards program.

“We are proud to add the Urban Robotics Foundation to our partner organizations,” said Robert Bell, co-founder of ICF. “Smart city solutions including robotics are features of every Intelligent Community as they work to develop their economies in the Digital Century. URF’s mission, to bring together community leaders and stakeholders in preparation for integrating robots into cities, addresses a challenge that will change the shape of communities over the next 20 years.”

About the Urban Robotics Foundation
The Urban Robotics Foundation ( was founded in 2021 as a global, non-profit organization that is bringing together stakeholders interested in public-area mobile robots (PMRs). Their goal is to help ensure that stakeholders understand the opportunities and challenges of PMRs and to build a global network of people focused on learning how PMRs can contribute to improved livability in urban ecosystems.

About the Intelligent Community Forum
The Intelligent Community Forum (, headquartered in New York, is a global network of nearly 200 cities, metro regions and counties. ICF has developed a unique economic development framework called the Community Accelerator Strategy, based on its work with over 200 communities around the world, and offers training, consulting, community certification and international awards. Implementing the Accelerator Strategy guides cities and regions in adapting to the demands of this digital century and create a triple “win” of inclusive economic prosperity that strengthens social connection and supports a rich and meaningful culture. ICF sponsors Institutes in North America dedicated to providing education and support to their regions, and national organizations in Canada and Taiwan, both home to many Intelligent Communities. In 2012 ICF was invited to participate at the Nobel Peace Prize conference in Oslo and in 2014, its model and work was recognized by the U.S. Department of Commerce under the Workforce Innovation and Opportunity Act, which, according to the American government, was “aimed at creating a more flexible and responsive system of workforce development to meet the needs of employers looking to fill 21st century jobs.”

Lee St. James, Managing Director
Urban Robotics Foundation
[email protected]

Matthew Owen, Executive Director
Intelligent Community Forum
[email protected]

Matthew Owen
Director of Operations, Intelligent Community Forum

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