In the final days of ITU’s Plenipotentiary Conference 2018 (PP-18) in Dubai, María Victoria Sukenik, Advisor to the Secretariat for ICTs in Argentina, spoke about the new resolutions passed at ITU that will strengthen the role of Academia and Small- and Medium-sized Enterprises (SMEs) in the work of the Union.
“Argentina has been involved in a lot of issues related to membership and in this Plenipotentiary, fortunately, we have a new resolution to encourage the participation of SMEs,” said Sukenik.
“This is really important, especially for developing countries, where our main industry [and] our main workforce is mainly SMEs,” said Sukenik. “So we would like to bring them in with a special membership… so that they could be included and participate.”
“For developing countries… I can say that almost 90 per cent of our industry is composed of SMEs. We do not have big companies and we realize that if we want to bring our… work here to ITU, we need to include them,” said Sukenik.
Argentina has also been a driving force for the inclusion of universities, researchers and academic members to join ITU.
“We also started pushing Academia in ITU, trying to bring them here. We also agreed at PP-10 to have a new members [category] for Academia. At first, it was a trial. Now they are already members and Argentina has now 15 universities associated with ITU. They are … participating a lot. They are taking leadership roles as associates, rapporteurs, also in focus groups and they are really interested,” said Sukenik.
Sukenik discussed her work on Smart Sustainable cities as the Chair of ITU-T Study Group 5 and also the Chair of the initiative United for Smart Sustainable Cities and how ITU’s work is impacting cities and those who live there.
“Smart Sustainable Cities are like connected cities or where cities are implementing new developments, innovation, new technologies in order to better the life of people…. What ITU [does] is to help with standards, with recommendations, also with the radio-communications area, helping to make all these Smart Cities work [to] try to bring solutions to people,” she said.