Ideas for Smart Cities, Quality of Life & Crime Prevention

Ideas for Smart Cities, Quality of Life & Crime Prevention

Building a “Smart City” is feasible with the help of advanced technologies. Leading countries around the world have already developed such cities by connecting various systems and devices over databases. Social inequalities reduce as smart cities offer efficient transport systems, energy management, and public services, including healthcare services. Also available in smart cities are smart homes, smart factories, smart agriculture, etc.

Thailand Institute of Justice (TIJ), which hosted the Rule of Law and Development Program (RoLD Program), recently organised the 10th Public Forum on the Rule of Law and Development: Resilient Leaders in Action. The event brought together figures from various age groups and backgrounds to explore means to curb inequalities and injustices in Thai society. Experts proposed solutions and recommendations for the joint development of smart cities. 

Technologically-Enabled Access to Justice

Inequalities and injustices have covertly prevailed in Thai society for a long time. They became increasingly evident, though, during the COVID-19 crisis, as efforts to address urgent problems brought to light problematic coordination and databases.

Mr. Lertratana Ratananukul

“Smart City” concepts promise to enhance the quality of life. Mr. Lertratana Ratananukul, Senior Vice President at Total Access Communication Public Company Limited, and a member of “RoLD2020: The Resilient Leader”, has conducted a research project on Open Data & Technology for Better Living to develop databases and mechanisms for smooth digital transition in a pilot area in Chachoengsao with tech-enabled features for increased public convenience and safety. 

Assoc. Prof. Dr. Supan Tungjitkusolmun

Assoc. Prof. Dr. Supan Tungjitkusolmun, president of CMKL University, defined smart cities as cities that have leveraged technologies for efficient traffic, energy, industrial and agricultural systems. Artificial intelligence (AI) and automation have been used to deliver good services and uphold good governance in smart cities. 

RoLD2020 class members’ field visit found that locals want justice, good management and security in life and assets the most. They believed if things improved in such areas, their city development would be sustainable with residents living happily, peacefully, and safely. 

Pol. Maj. General Niwate Arpawasin

Pol. Maj. General Niwate Arpawasin, Commander of High-Tech Crime Division, Royal Thai Police, said that, based on information gathered by several organisations, people in Chachoengsao would be happy if their hometown was safe.

Most common crime types in Chachoengsao were drug-related, traffic violations, and non-criminal nuisances. Such issues, if not addressed, would cause problems. The biggest obstacles in preventing/addressing such crimes are lack of data integration and interagency follow-up. 

The study on the pilot area revealed that data can be leveraged for the following: 

  1. Ticketing System: Complaint-receiving should be organised centrally, with a clear timeframe for expected responses. 
  2. AI Chatbot: As the number of enquiries commonly exceeds the number of officials available, an artificial intelligence-driven chatbot should be developed to answer people’s basic questions.
  3. Social Listening: Pay attention to the voices of people on the internet. Categorise and prioritise their online complaints before assigning relevant teams to handle the complaints.
  4. Single Page Dashboard: The provincial governor and executives should see the overall picture of problems in the province and be aware of problems locals are facing every day. 

Dr. Napat Jatusripitak

Accurate Judicial-Process Database To open the door to a smart-city system, an accurate judicial-process database should be developed using Cloud Big Data. Dr. Napat Jatusripitak, Co-Founder and CEO of Siammetrics Consulting Company Limited, expected the database to be: 

- Effective in reducing city people’s problems;
- Efficient in facilitating fast responses and minimising damage, and;
- Unbiased in that all areas and all people, regardless of their social class, should enjoy the same service quality. 

Other types of data are also integrated. For example, hotspot analysis can monitor road accidents and road casualties. While road accidents happen in many areas, inadequate lighting is a possible cause. The analysis can enable data users to predict trends for better decision-making. Some areas have seen a large and rising number of road accidents, thus requiring urgent solutions. 

Narrowing the Digital Gap

Mr. Payong Srivanich

Executives’ proper use of technologies is crucial to fairness and equality. Mr. Payong Srivanich, President of Krungthai Bank and the Thai Bankers Association, said fairness must be a pillar for Thai society’s sustainable development. Other than treating all equally, fairness focuses on whether the end result will be fair taking into account that people and sectors in society have different contexts and capital. 

Moreover, Mr. Payong addressed the application of technologies in urban development based on a study by RoLD2020 class members and also looked at the issue from a wider perspective. He pointed out that Krungthai Bank, which operates business so Thais can have a better quality of life, has embraced technologies in four dimensions, namely, economy, judicial process, education, and health. 

“Today, the right to access technologies should be fundamental because technologies offer opportunities for fairness. We should join hands in improving Thais’ quality of life in the digital economy. Technologies must be leveraged to give Thais a better life,” Mr. Payong concluded. 

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