Vancouver, BC – The City of New Westminster and the Vancouver Economic Commission (VEC) today signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) on technology deployment and innovation. This marks the beginning of a partnership between the two parties to build a regional platform for technology deployment, demonstration, and business innovation.
“The City of New Westminster is proud to be an anchor of innovation and sustainability in the region,” said Mayor Jonathan X. Coté. “Through our new partnership with the Vancouver Economic Commission, we will accelerate our own and others’ ability to support regional companies who want to bring cutting-edge technology to bear on major problems.”
The City of New Westminster and the Vancouver Economic Commission will collaborate to develop a network and programming for private industry, public sector institutions, investors, and other partners to work together to demonstrate and deploy new technologies that can solve major societal problems. The collaboration is intended to:
- Develop demand and market access for innovative technologies by increasing regional project deployment of technology, which will in turn help move products to market faster by sourcing both regional and global innovations;
- Create a pipeline for innovations to be sourced and connected to key institutional and corporate stakeholders in a streamlined way;
- Generate positive environmental and social outcomes as major institutions are able to access new technologies and products that can help them achieve their core missions;
- Build a strong and long-lasting bridge between large institutions, including the public sector and the regional technology community;
- Help attract outside investment into the region’s business community.
The technology deployment network is a regional expansion of the Green & Digital Demonstration Program designed in partnership by the Vancouver Economic Commission and City of Vancouver in 2014. It provides access to city resources (i.e., buildings, streets, vehicles, digital infrastructure) for product testing and showcase opportunities, as well as critical follow-on connections and business expansion support from VEC staff.
“Leading smart cities around the world are looking for demonstration sites and partnerships for new, sustainable solutions to old-school problems,” said VEC CEO Catherine Warren. “By sharing our popular incubation program, we hope that other jurisdictions will spark innovation – and that the City of New Westminster is the first of many municipal leaders to take it forward.”
Final negotiations for the innovation Partnership MOU took place on October 10, 2018, at the third annual Cascadia Innovation Corridor Conference hosted in Vancouver.
“Vancouver’s Green and Digital Demonstration Program has been a big success and served as a model for other global cities looking to up their game on innovation,” said Vancouver Mayor Gregor Robertson, who also chairs the VEC Board of Directors. “Vancouver has the fastest growing and greenest economy in Canada, fuelled by a booming startup ecosystem and an internationally recognized digital strategy. A regional expansion of the Green and Digital Demonstration Program is a welcome next step that will help tackle some of the biggest challenges we face locally and globally, from climate change to affordable housing.”
About the Vancouver Economic Commission
The Vancouver Economic Commission (VEC) is the economic development agency for the city’s businesses, investors and citizens. It works to strengthen Vancouver’s economic future by supporting local companies, attracting foreign investment and promoting international trade. VEC works collaboratively to position Vancouver as a global destination for innovative, creative, diverse and sustainable development. www.vancouvereconomic.com
Based in the heart of downtown, VEC respectfully acknowledges that it is located on the unceded ancestral territories of the Musqueam, Tsleil-Waututh and Squamish nations.
About the Green & Digital Demonstration Program
The Green and Digital Demonstration Program (GDDP) provides access to City of Vancouver resources (i.e. buildings, streets, vehicles, digital infrastructure) for product testing and showcase opportunities, as well as critical follow-on connections and business expansion support from VEC staff. It is currently undergoing a regional expansion. www.vancouvereconomic.com/gddp/