2021-11-14, 12:00–12:30, Room 1
SmartDevOps project is an ERASMUS+ Sector ALliance project that aims to close the gap between today’s and future’s skills demands of the municipal workforce by emphasizing the exploitation of emerging employment paradigms.
In the context of this project, a main deliverable was "Smart Cities Body of Knowledge" - SCBOK
SCBOK book is the first systematic approach to smart cities' competences development. It defines curricula for developing the required knowledge coherently and systematically. The profession and skills presented were elaborated from various viewpoints, through laborious market research. This SCBOK is concluding that three new job professions are required for smart city professionals, namely: Smart City Planner, Smart City IT Manager and SmartCity IT officer.
This is an open educational resource that was released during October 2021 and it is an open educational resource and it is available at https://smartdevops.eu/scbok/
Smart cities are complex ecosystems that use information and communication technologies for helping their citizens and organizations deal with the challenges of urbanization, safety, resilience, and sustainability. Their creation is a long and laborious transformation that should not be considered mainly as a technical challenge but as a movement to create citizen-centered ecosystems that improve quality of life and stimulate economic activity.
Smart city ecosystems are comprised of people, organizations and businesses, policies, technologies, legislation, and processes integrated to create the desired outcomes. Within this context, people comprise a vital constituent in these efforts and a highly skilled workforce is key in rendering smart city ecosystems a reality.
Today, more and more smart cities are emerging worldwide creating a sustainable and strongly growing market. According to various market reports, it is expected that this market will reach the size of 1 billion euros worldwide, but the most important fact is that is expected to change our daily lives.
Although for several years we were working on the development of this new smart ecosystem, quite recently we discovered that the people factor was not considered, sufficiently. We realized that even though billions were invested in technological or urban development, not sufficient effort has been spent in training the necessary workforce with the skills to fulfil this vision. Development of a smart city was considered “business as usual” by the IT vendors, or even yet another case of modern technology deployment. However, this is far from true as smart cities transvers every aspect of our lives and our activities.
As we routinely say, we are “living in a software-enabled society and we cannot risk it”. And since our lives depend surprisingly so much on the smooth operation of digital services, we need to reassure ourselves and to invent new ways to develop software that empowers us to produce reliable software, with the ability to continuously develop new features and effortlessly deploy it and make it available to our citizens in a matter of seconds. This was the reason that we decided to promote DevOps culture. DevOps is a culture, is a set of practices that combines software development (Dev) and IT operations (Ops), and it aims to shorten the software life cycle and provide continuous delivery with high software quality. In simpler terms it allows us to innovate and rapidly deploy these innovative solutions to the citizens or the customers. In fact, this is the case with commercial software, which is automatically deployed through mobile devices, but it is not necessarily the case with city mission-critical systems.
These observations were our motivation for the SmartDevOps project. The SmartDevOps project (https://smartdevops.eu) was funded by Erasmus+ KA2 with Project No.: 601015-EPP-1-2018-1-EL-EPPKA2-SSA and it commenced on January 1st, 2019.
Since then, several milestones were realized: three new smart cities professions, an extensive list of smart cities-related competences, extensive pilot training attended by hundreds of trainees that validated the training offerings, a network of experts, a community of practice at the European level.
This book presents the first version of the Smart Cities Body of Knowledge (SCBoK), which is the most important deliverable of the SmartDevOps project, that is an attempt to systematically approach the topic of required smart cities competences. Furthermore, it offers the curricula that can be used to develop the required knowledge coherently and systematically.
Moreover, we address the main question regarding the need of specialized professionals for the development of smart cities and whether this specialization constitutes one or more new, discrete profession(s).
The professions and skills presented were derived from various viewpoints, as well as from an international perspective through laborious market research. This research was conducted in the context of the SmartDevOps project, concluding that three new job professions with competences from four distinctive groups, are needed for smart city professionals, namely:
• Smart City Planner
• Smart City IT Manager
• Smart City IT Officer
Furthermore, this is a particularly informative and useful book, the content of which you not only need but you must also master, to develop your competences for smart city. This book provides a significant contribution to achieving that.
This is the first international book covering smart city professionals’ needs and competences, which makes it not only unique but also important. It offers every smart city stakeholder the opportunity to learn, understand, and apply these smart city competences.
We already mentioned that this is the first version of this book, since we strongly believe that the smart cities ecosystem is a complex, self-organizing, and dynamic system of systems which is evolving constantly. As such, the findings presented in this SCBoK should be regularly re-evaluated and updated, which is also the case for other existing “Bodies of Knowledge”.
Smart city professions and their development has taken a significant first step with SmartDevOps project; however, much remains to be done. The recognition of these new professional needs, by society and the market, alike is an important step that must be taken. However, this is not the only one. We can enumerate some further actions needed: development of a certification schema, promotion of these new professions, and others.
- You may view the educational material developed by the project at https://smartdevops.eu/dev/oers/
- You may view all project videos at https://smartdevops.eu/dev/videos/
- You may download all project deliverables at https://smartdevops.eu/dev/deliverables/
Professor Dr. Panos Fitsilis is a full Professor at Business Administration Dept. of the University of Thessaly, Greece., and academic coordinator of the module “Software Design” at Hellenic Open University. He has extensive project management experience with the development and deployment of large IT systems and extensive management experience in various senior management positions. His research interests include Smart Cities and required competences, Smart Factories (Industry 4.0), Business Information Systems, Social Systems, Educational Technology, Software Project Management, etc.