Damn it, Canada. You’re a smart bunch of individuals.

Go ahead. You can admit it. No one will judge you for saying so. Because actually, it’s pretty much a proven fact.

The Intelligent Community Forum named the top seven intelligent communities for 2016. And with an IQ popping three Canadian cities on the list, it’s time for us to stop being modest.

The non-profit think tank, based in New York, announced the winners this week, recognizing seven of the world’s most gifted metropolises. Of the three Canadian cities on the list, all were from a different province; Montreal (Quebec), Surrey (B.C), and Winnipeg (Manitoba). Meaning that the country’s intellect isn’t just concentrated in one area – there are geniuses from all across the land.

The Intelligent Community Indicators used six pointers to define the critical success factors, which provides the framework for understanding what goes into making an intelligent community.

Broadband, Knowledge Workforce, Innovation, Digital Equality, Sustainability and Advocacy all add up to decide who is eligible for the top 21 (announced in November) which was ultimately whittled down to a top seven.

Among other things, Montreal made the list because of its Smart City plan, launched in 2011, which built-out the city’s broadband infrastructure. It was also commended for the influence of so many impressive academic institutions which graduates more students in higher education from its metro area than any other Canadian city. It’s set-up for small businesses and accelerator programs were commended.

Surrey, B.C. made the list thanks to a new Sustainability Compact, which focuses on reducing emissions and adapting to climate change, as well as its Innovation Boulevard project – a diversification strategy that has partnered higher learning institutions with local businesses. The MySurrey app was cited for improving livability and engaging with citizens.

Employment partnerships (Canadian Tire and the University of Winnipeg) and The Composite Innovation Centre’s efforts to improve the supply of skilled employees and creation of training programs to give students on the job experience helped to put this city on the list. The Digital Voices Project was also recognized for helping to provide the Aboriginal community to tell their cultural stories across multiple media outlets.

In June, one of the top seven will be named ICF’s Intelligent Community of the Year. Last year’s overall winner was Columbus, Ohio, and back in 2014 Toronto took the crown. Here’s hoping another Canadian city can take the top spot in 2016.

The other cities to make the list in 2016, were:
– Hsinchu County, Taiwan
– Muelheim an der Ruhr, Germany
– New Taipei City, Taiwan
– Whanganui, New Zealand

About The Author

Jr. Writer

Katie is fuelled by tea, terrible puns and a healthy dose of sarcasm. A Brit living in Toronto, just nodding along politely while everyone talks about the Maple Leafs' prospects this season. She loves writing about her new city which (streetcars aside) she thinks is pretty cool. The proud owner of too many hats and scarves, she is currently panic-buying her way into Canadian winter.

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