blue smart cities

It is the real time to engage the transition

In English

Cities, organizations and industries in Europe and around the world are striving to reach their carbon neutrality objectives to do their part in the fight against climate change. The European Green Deal’s objective is to make Europe achieve climate neutrality by 2050, aiming to mitigate pollution and simultaneously enhancing the economy through green technology. In addition, the European Green Deal’s purpose is to elevate industry’s and transport’s sustainability to a new level. The challenges originating from climate and environmental issues can be turned into opportunities for all. However, risks can arise as well.

The green transition of energy and sustainability presents possibilities and challenges, even risks, depending on the case and subject. Effective management of transition risks is pivotal for the resilience of businesses in number of global value chains. One possible way to address and streamline the pros and cons of green transition is to enhance and optimize the use of real-time data in an ecosystem’s (e.g., city, industry, organization) day-to-day operations, and use the data as a foundation and leverage of collaboration and engagement with stakeholders.

University of Vaasa’s InnoLab research platform is involved with a project called T-Risk: Managing Transition Risks in Risk Bearing Value Chains, together with Aalto University. The project focuses on the maritime and aviation industries. Organizations operating in these industries are becoming more and more aware of the various risks involved with energy/green transition. These pitfalls can include market risks arising from transitions in market preferences, technology risks created by complex and vast technological changes, regulatory risks due to changes in climate policies, or reputational risks caused by liability concerns in a principally low-carbon future.

Real-time digital data interacting with smarter future

How to integrate the risks into corporate agendas and convert the climate risks into risks that can be managed? Possible measures to be considered are freshened up and enhanced communication, collaboration and interactive engagement through utilization of real-time digital data.

In this golden age of digitalization and smart technologies – e.g, Information Communication Technologies (ICT), Big Data, Internet of Things (IoT), artificial intelligence (AI) and machine learning solutions, sensor technology, cloud computing and blockchain – digital data can be extracted from various sources existing all around us in an urban ecosystem. For example, numerous cities around the world and in Finland as well, are currently examining and implementing innovative ways and smart technologies to construct city-wide IoT-platforms, which can enable real-time data from traffic and mobility, energy efficiency of buildings and facilities, renewables and other energy sources, and electric vehicle charging infrastructure. Furthermore, the status of weather, climate and emissions are relevant sources of real-time data, as are issues of safety and services, all pivotal for boosting livability, attractiveness and development of a city and enhancing its citizens’ quality of life.

The benefits of using real-time data, instead of resorting to historical one, are vast and more ways are yet to be discovered.  It can optimize decision-making processes, planning and monitoring procedures, and execution of operations and projects. Additionally, real-time data can be exploited in procurement processes and enhancing cost-efficiency, implementation of smart solutions and technologies, providing support in quality and risk management, and aiding in communication and interaction with stakeholders.

Indeed, real-time data is engaging. Through real-time digital data, data-platform development and various ways to display and target the AI-crunched data, stakeholders of an ecosystem can access the “real-time status quo of the state of things” and contribute to the green transition, thus, aiding in achieving the sustainability goals in a common front. We are all together in this endeavour, all for one and one for all.

Bob Dylan sang, “For the times, they are a-changin’”.

The times have a way of doing that, now, the next moment, all the time.


Tomi Paalosmaa
Project Researcher – T-Risk
PhD Student – Electrical Engineering, Smart Electrical Systems
InnoLab – University of Vaasa

8 kommenttia artikkeliin “It is the real time to engage the transition

  1. Good text! Four things i liked here was:
    1. Cities, organizations, and industries around the world are working towards carbon neutrality in order to address climate change.
    2. The use of real-time data can help address the risks and challenges of the transition to a more sustainable economy.
    3. Digital technologies, such as IoT, AI, and blockchain, can be used to extract real-time data from various sources in urban ecosystems.
    4. Real-time data can improve decision-making, planning, and monitoring, and support the implementation of smart solutions and technologies. It can also facilitate communication and engagement with stakeholders in support of sustainability goals.

    1. Hi Jami,

      Thank you for the feedback. So nice to hear it caught you attention and rose some interest by some of the capabilities and benefits real-time data and all the magnificent solutions of Industy 4.0 has to offer (…and the next-level Industry 5.0) for us all, so we can tackle the climate and sustainability challenges together.

  2. Interesting perspectives! Humanity should have increased knowledge-based management a long time ago. At a time of such a profound change, optimizing entire systems even seems impossible without utilizing the most real-time information possible. It is equally important to acquire information about the situational picture of different levels of organizations and societies. Real-time data only provides benefits if situational awareness of different actors can be combined!

    1. Hi Mikko,

      You said it, spot on! Real-time data provided by various Industry 4.0 solutions and technologies are powerful tools – mighty means to a successful end – only if ecosystems they are utilized in promote and cherish the aspect of innovating together as an ecosystem, with all of the actors and stakeholders onboard. Together we gain the best benefit! Together we can make a change! Together we are strong! Together and in real-time.

  3. Onnea ja menenestystä T-Risk-hankkeelle! Kuulostaa siltä, että teette erittäin ajassa kiinni olevaa tutkimusta, jonka tuloksilla on käytännönsovellattavuutta ja yhteiskunnallista merkittävyyttä.

    1. Hei Annu,

      Kiitos paljon kannustuksesta!

      Reaaliaikaisen datan tuottamaan teknologiaan ja tuon datan hyödyntämiseen ympäristötavoitteiden saavuttamisessa kohdentuu tällä hetkellä paljon tutkimustyötä ja toimenpiteitä. Aihe on mielenkiintoinen ja muuttuva, ja siinä on vielä niin paljon kartoittamattomia alueita joita tutkia.

      Aihe vetää puoleensa paljon kvantitatiivista tutkimusta, mikä on ymmärrettävää reaaliaikaisen datan tuottamiseen liittyvien useiden teknisten ratkaisuiden vuoksi. Oma tutkimusaiheeni on kuitenkin kvalitatiivinen. Pyrin tutkimaan reaaliaikaisen datan käytön hyötyjä, haasteita ja kehityssuuntia erityisesti innovaatioekosysteemin näkövinkkelistä. Sitä rajapintaa ja hetkeä, missä kylmä kalkulatiivinen data kohtaa ihmisen, hänen ympäristönsä ja niiden tarpeet sekä toimijat.

      Kyllä vain, työtä ja tutkittavaa on edessä runsaasti ja kehitys etenee todella huimaa vauhtia Industry 4.0:n (ja 5.0:n) osalta. Sarkastisesti voisinkin todeta, että on jokseenkin ironista, että itseäni hyödyttäisi valtavasti, jos voisin seurata alan muutoksia ja uusia vinhasti vaihtuvia tuulia reaaliaikaisesti.

  4. Dear Tomi,
    You have presented a compelling argument about the need to engage in the transition towards a more sustainable future. By discussing the challenges that we face as a society, including climate change, inequality, and resource depletion, you have highlighted the urgent need for action.
    You also have emphasized the importance of engaging in the transition at both an individual and a societal level. By taking responsibility for our actions and making small changes in our daily lives, we can collectively make a significant impact on the environment and contribute to a more sustainable future.
    Moreover, the post has provided useful insights into the role of businesses, governments, and individuals in driving the transition towards sustainability. By highlighting the importance of collaboration and collective action, you have demonstrated how we can work together to achieve a more sustainable future.
    Overall, the post is well-written, informative, and thought-provoking. It encourages me to take action and engage in the transition towards a more sustainable future, and it provides valuable insights into the role that we all can play in this important process.
    I hope you all the best.

    Best Regards

  5. It’s a great reminder that we are all together in this endeavor. In order to achieve sustainability goals on a common front, we are supposed to work collaboratively. Overall, the article offers valuable insights into the challenges and opportunities associated with the green transition and how real-time data can help us overcome those challenges.


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