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Education key to turning Launceston into a smart city

Education is a key element in a new project to transform Launceston into one of Australia’s smart cities.

The Greater Launceston Transformation Project will use smart technology and big data to both connect the city, and to reveal it in new ways.

The University of Tasmania is a partner in the project alongside the State and Federal Governments, the Launceston, West Tamar, Meander Valley and George Town councils, and Telstra.

Pro-Vice Chancellor (Community, Partnerships and Regional Development) Professor David Adams said the project would see collaboration across four streams: innovation, a digital city, digital opportunities for industry, and education and employment pathways.

“We welcome the launch of this partnership because it brings with it a number of exciting opportunities for improving educational outcomes in the region,” Professor Adams said.

“This project will provide us with invaluable data and analytics about where our students are coming from, how they are making their decisions about where and what to study, and what the region’s skills demands will be over the next 10 years.

“But beyond that targeted work, we know that increasing digital literacy and digital inclusion rates improves learning outcomes, so any work to create a more technologically connected community will deliver long term benefits.”

Professor Adams said the Greater Launceston Transformation Project would build on earlier work to cover the city with an Internet of Things (IoT) network. This LORA network, a long range, low power network similar to Wi-Fi, is a collaboration between the University’s Sense-T, Launceston-based Definium Technologies and the CSIRO.

“The University is proud to be involved in partnerships with government, industry and the community that are all working to build a stronger future for Northern Tasmania.

“Through our own Northern Transformation project, we are developing modern, state-of-the-art campuses in Burnie and Launceston that will be able to adapt to new ways of teaching, new ways of learning, and to how our students and staff use them.

“It is exciting that as we develop a smart campus for Launceston and integrate the University further into the community, we will be doing so in a smart city that is also reinventing itself for the future.”

Source: UTAS

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