IBM Awards Mombasa County in Kenya with grant to fund consultations with IBM problem solvers

By Bizclik Editor

IBM today named Mombasa County as an IBM Smarter Cities Challenge grant recipient for Smarter Cities Challenge. 

Smarter Cities Challenge is a competitive grant program that sends teams of some of IBM's most talented experts to select cities and regions worldwide to provide pro bono consulting expertise on the most critical issues faced by communities today.

 This year, the company will be helping at least 16 cities and regions around the world this year address issues ranging from clean water, healthy food, and revenue generation, to job development, efficient transportation, and public safety. 

For these consultative engagements, IBM teams invest months studying a local issue chosen by a winning municipality.  

They then spend three weeks on the ground in the region gathering and analysing all relevant data, while meeting in person with dozens of members of the government, citizen, business, and not-for-profit communities.

In doing so, they gather diverse perspectives about the causes and potential solutions to the challenge at hand. At the conclusion of these studies, IBM presents comprehensive recommendations for solving the problem, followed weeks later by a more detailed, written plan for its implementation. 

An IBM team will visit Mombasa County later this year to review and recommend strategies for enhancing revenue collection and management. 

Mombasa Governor, Hassan Joho, said:“We are honored and elated to receive this award. We are confident that it will go a long way in helping us to elaborate mechanisms that will increase efficiency in revenue collection and ultimately improve service delivery to our citizens and to Mombasa as a preferred tourist destination.”

Smarter Cities Challenge was originally conceived in 2011 as a three-year grant program, but highly positive feedback and effective results have encouraged IBM to extend the initiative.

 In its first three years, IBM's Smarter Cities Challenge deployed 600 experts on six-person teams who provided strategic and practical advice to 100 municipalities.

 These highly prized three-week engagements, each valued at USD $500,000, have helped cities address key challenges in a variety of spheres. 

Following are cities and regions that IBM is today announcing as winners of the IBM Smarter Cities Challenge grants for 2014:   Abuja, Nigeria; Ballarat, Australia; Baton Rouge, United States; Birmingham, United States; Brussels, Belgium; Dallas, United States; Dublin, Ireland; Durban, South Africa; Jinan, China; Mombasa County, Kenya; Niigata, Japan; Perth, Australia; Suffolk County, United States; Tainan, Taiwan; Vilnius, Lithuania; Zapopan, Mexico.

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