Smart ABC programme

Smart solutions make innovative use of ICTs to improve quality of life, efficiency of services, productivity and competitiveness. ITU has created a unique platform bringing together artificial intelligence, a key enabler of smart, with emerging applications in digital financial services and urban living. The second edition of our Smart ABC Programme at ITU Telecom World 2018 focuses on the latest technological, business and policy developments at the intersection of these three critical fields of the smart age.

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As machines rapidly gain the ability to learn, improve and make calculated decisions, AI is performing more and more tasks beyond human capability, or previously thought to rely on human experience and creativity. AI is increasingly driving solutions across all industry sectors, learning from billions of connected objects in IoT applications to create continuously evolving ecosystems of intelligent devices.


In a world where 1.6 billion adults have a mobile phone but do not have access to a bank account, ICTs have huge potential to reshape financial transactions, processes and consumer behaviour. ICT and financial-services industry players and their overarching regulatory bodies are driving fintech innovation towards smart and secure universal financial access.


Smart cities are the digital transformation of public services, enabling better management of infrastructure and resources, encouraging sustainable urbanization and facilitating hubs of innovation. Smart city ICT infrastructure needs to support openness and interoperability, which will only be achieved with coordinated adherence to international standards.

Why take part?

  • Unique platform to share knowledge, develop business and build partnerships
  • Critical space for international dialogue on key emerging technologies
  • Promote understanding and awareness of capabilities of Smart ABC sectors
  • Key opportunity to explore technical standardization and policy guidance essential to ABC success
  • Connect with leading proponents of Smart ABC technologies throughout Africa
  • Sponsor a Forum session, networking events or floor spacesat ITU Telecom World 2018 to raise your visibility and promote your message
  • Exhibit your project, products, apps and services before an international audience in the Smart ABC Pavilion.

Smart ABC programme 2018



Join heads of smart cities from around the world, fintech leaders, AI experts and tech start-ups to address the opportunities and challenge of Smart ABC alongside smart city mayors, financial sector professionals, regulators, ministers, CEOs, SMEs, innovators, media and consultants.

Smart ABC Pavilion


Exhibitors from governments, major ICT players and SMEs will showcase, discuss and demo key smart technologies. Experience first-hand the products, services and applications shaping the future, find out more on the work of ITU and discover smart development potential throughout Africa and beyond.



Explore the creative potential of emerging Smart ABC technologies from the perspectives of technology, business and policy in the Forum Summit and cross-sectoral Forum debates – from the disruptive role of AI in the financial industry and improving urban living standards to the business opportunities, new markets and lea ding players in each sector, and the technical standardization or new regulation needed to support Smart ABC.



Network with experts, innovators and policy-makers on Smart ABC technologies, from VIP dinners to networking cocktails, themed lunches and the popular ITU Telecom World event app. Meet leaders from government, the private sector, civil society and academia to share insights and expertise across industry sectors.

Smart ABC Incubator


Take part in a programme of activities designed specifically to assist technology-oriented entrepreneurs in the fields of AI, Banking and Smart Cities in the early start-up and development stage.

Find out more

Programme highlights


  • Andy Nam, Chief Information Officer, Standard & Charted Bank
  • Chi Hyung Lee, President & CEO, Seoul Digital Foundation
  • Douglas Feagin, Senior Vice President, Ant Financial (Alipay)
  • Eldar Tuzmukhametov, Head of Smart City Lab, Moscow
  • Gongpil Choi, Director, Korea Institute of Finance and Technology
  • Idonae Lovetrue, CEO, Demiurge Technologies
  • Ismael Villegas Ochoa, Chief Information Officer, Mexico City
  • Myung Soon Park, Director, AI Division, SK Telecom
  • Neil Sahota, Worldwide Business Development Manager, IBM
  • Paul Wilson, Chief Marketing Officer, TM Forum
  • Satoshi Amagai, President & CEO, Mofiria Corporation
  • Stephen Ibarakai, Senior Advisor, Financial Services Roundtable
  • Tan Kiat How, CEO, Infocomm
  • Thomas Suh, Founder & CEO, Legalmation
  • Toufi Saliba, CEO, PrivacyShell & TodaCorp
  • Winnie Tang, Founder, Smart City Consortium
  • Yasmin Mahmood, CEO, Malaysia Digital Economy Corporation (MDEC)
  • Young-Sook Nam, Secretary General, WeGO
See all speakers

How to take part in Smart ABC at ITU Telecom World 2018

Join ministers, regulators, industry executives, city leaders and SMEs in the high-level Forum Summit and full programme of Forum debates focused on “Innovation for smarter digital development”.

Exhibit your project, products, apps and services in the Smart ABC Pavilion.

Sponsor a Forum session, networking events or floor spaces at ITU Telecom World 2018 to raise your visibility and promote your message.

Nominate yourself or other thought-leaders and experts on AI, fintech or smart cities to speak in the Forum.

For more details on how you can take part in Smart ABC at ITU Telecom World 2018, please contact

For more information on Smart ABC activities contact:

For more information on ITU Telecom World 2018 visit:

ITU smart standards

The Smart ABC Pavilion at ITU Telecom World 2018 is part of ITU’s commitment to providing a neutral platform for international cross-sector dialogue on the potential of smart technologies, and the associated implications for standardization, policy and regulation. Further events and activities planned for Smart ABC in 2018 include:

The second edition of the AI for Good Global Summit took place in Geneva, 15-17 May 2018, in partnership with the XPRIZE Foundation, the Association for Computing Machinery, and sister UN agencies. The Summit focuses on impactful AI solutions able to yield long-term benefits and help achieve the UN Sustainable Development Goals.

Within ITU-T, the Focus Group on Machine Learning for Future Networks including 5G (FG-ML5G) was established to draft technical reports and specifications for machine learning (ML) for future networks, including interfaces, network architectures, protocols, algorithms and data formats.

The ITU AI Repository has also been recently launched to identify AI-related projects, research initiatives, think-tanks and organizations that can accelerate progress towards the “17 UN Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs)”.

ITU-T Study Group 20 develops international standards to enable the coordinated development of IoT technologies in smart cities, including machine-to-machine communications and ubiquitous sensor networks. This Study Group is also involved in studies relating to big data aspects of IoT and smart cities and communities. ITU together with other 16 UN agencies has developed a set of KPIs for smart sustainable cities to establish the criteria to evaluate the contributions of ICT in making cities smarter and more sustainable, and to provide cities with the means for self-assessment in order to achieve the sustainable development goals (SDGs).

ITU, together with 16 other UN agencies, has also launched the “United for Smart Sustainable Cities” (U4SSC) initiative to advocate for public policy to encourage the use of ICTs to facilitate and ease the transition to smart sustainable cities.

ITU-T Focus Group on Digital Financial Services has published a wide range of research and technical reports tackling issues such as reaching digital liquidity, consumer protection, digital identity and digital ledger technologies. The Focus Group was influential in identifying strategies to scale-up the use of digital financial services. Building on the strong collaboration initiated by the Focus Group, the Financial Inclusion Global Initiative (FIGI) has been set up as a joint collaboration between ITU, Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation, World Bank and the Bank for International Settlements, to support and accelerate the implementation of country-led reform actions to meet national financial inclusion targets and the global Universal Financial Access 2020 goal. In particular, focus will be on enabling national authorities to better harness the potential of digital technologies for financial inclusion.

Find out more about ITU’s standardization work at

Smart ABC partners