Manila aims for ‘smart city’ status, bags 3 awards for digital governance


Just as the City of Manila is gearing for the attainment of “Smart City” status, the local government unit (LGU) won three awards during the Digital Governance Awards 2021 (LGUs Best Practices in Information and Communication Technology) held last October 29.

The awards include the Covid 19-Testing Center Web-Lab-IS–Best in LGU Empowerment Award  (City Level)—1st Place; City of Manila Connection for Inclusion Award­—Best in Customer Empowerment Award (City Level) 1st Place and the Business Permit Licensing Service (BPLS)—Best in Business Empowerment Award (City Level) 2nd Place.

Earlier, the city government of Manila forged a partnership with software giant Microsoft which will help accelerate the LGU’s goal of building a 21st-century economy that lifts up the poor, improves job opportunities for its middle class, and enhance how the city government works internally.

“Becoming a smart city will improve the delivery of services externally and enhances our overall business and investment-friendly attractiveness, especially as we seek to recover from the worst of the Covid-19 pandemic,” said Manila Mayor Francisco “Isko Moreno” Domagoso.

Andres Ortola, Country General Manager of Microsoft Philippines, said the City of Manila has taken on an enormous challenge in their ambition to become a smart city and they look forward to working closely with them to support their transformation efforts and hopefully, to inspire and assist other government units and agencies across the Philippines as well.

“City governments today have an opportunity to better serve their citizens through the power of technology. Artificial Intelligence, the Cloud, and Data can all be harnessed to increase efficiencies and improve everything from public safety, transportation, infrastructure and citizen services,” Ortola said.

Digital transformation has been at the heart of Moreno’s administration of the City of Manila. Upon assuming the post as city mayor in July 1, 2019, he discovered that the city lacked baseline data sets for population, family size, income and education, among others.  30

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