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Study On Becoming Smart

Think Tank Launches First International Study of Intelligent Communities’ Performance in the “Broadband Economy”

New York City, NY – The Intelligent Community Forum (ICF), which hosts the annual Intelligent Community of the Year Awards, will launch a new, free community evaluation system called the Intelligent Community Index. It will provide any participating community with detailed feedback on its progress toward becoming an Intelligent Community. The Index questionnaire can be accessed here.

As with the Intelligent Community Awards program, there is no fee or cost to participate in the Intelligent Community Index. Communities submitting the questionnaire will receive a detailed report comparing their performance to ICF’s global data set, and be automatically entered into the next cycle of the Intelligent Community Forum’s Awards program. Columbus, Ohio (USA) is the current Intelligent Community of the Year.

ICF will publish reports on the data periodically, beginning with its first report in the last quarter of 2016. The reports will help shape national and regional policies on urban and rural development, as well as validate the efforts of community leaders to build a better future. The reports will be available through ICF and its two Institutes for the Study of the Intelligent Community in Dublin, Ohio and Starkville, Mississippi, as well as through ICF Canada and ICF's global Foundation.

The new program is the culmination of work by the New York-based think tank, which has spent 15 years developing evidence-based, objective metrics to assess the goals and achievements of Intelligent Communities for its famous international awards program. The goal of the Index is to provide communities everywhere – cities, towns and regions, both urban and rural – with practical, real-world guidance on becoming an Intelligent Community, and an objective method for measuring progress.

“Since 1995 our goal has been to help communities build prosperous and inclusive economies in what we call the ‘Broadband Economy,’” said ICF co-founder Robert Bell. “In addition to sharing inspiring stories of global community renewal in our books and publications, our research analysts have found ways to effectively measure a community’s goals, achievements and results. We think it is a quantum leap for anyone looking to provide metrics for their investments.”

The ICF approach corrects for difference in population, wealth and location to provide real-time data “snapshots” of the actual positioning of a place relative to its aspirations. It is guided by the six criteria used by ICF to assess communities for its awards program.

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