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Study Tour 2013 - Chattanooga Update PDF Print E-mail
Written by David Brunnen   
Saturday, 02 March 2013 00:00

** UPDATE 22 MARCH 2013 **  New Study Tour Option

Responding to enquiries from potential delegates we have introduced a Chattanooga Only option.  This 3-night option is £1,000 cheaper than the full 5-night Study Tour that includes the ICF Summit in New York.

For the latest detailed brief and itinerary email This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it   or call +44 (0) 7714 325 657.



We have just returned from our 'pathfinder' visit to Chattanooga and New York.  We have updated the details below and made some great contacts with folks willing to share their experiences of developing 'smart cities'.  


Study tour to Chattanooga and the Intelligent Community Forum (ICF) Summit in New York

Week commencing 2nd June 2013 

Our next Study Tour will take delegates to the City of Chattanooga in Eastern Tennessee where we will explore the emergence and impacts of the USA’s first ‘GigCity’.  We will then relocate to New York for part of ICF’s annual summit before returning home overnight on 7th/8th June.

Chattanooga is the first city in the USA to offer one-gigabit-per-second fibre Internet service to all residents and businesses.  At 200 times the speed of the national average, the Gig opens the door to unimagined ways of learning, playing and conducting business.

In recent years, the city’s signature lifestyle and focus on environmental stewardship has attracted $4 billion in foreign direct investment.

The fibre network that enables Gig service was installed by Chattanooga's publicly owned electric power company, EPB, to support the most advanced smart grid system in the nation.  The smart grid is the first major application for Chattanooga's Gig network, but it’s just one of many that the community plans to deploy as they continue to take advantage of the Gig.

The Chattanooga experience provides many potential insights for the UK economy, including:


  • Responding to the challenges and opportunities of a digital economy
  • Enabling applications across many sectors – and inward investment and jobs growth
  • Innovation impacts – an in-depth view of ‘Gig Tank’, ‘Lamp Post’ and ‘Company Lab’
  • The enabling role of the Energy utility – with innovative FTTH-linked smart grid applications
  • How long term gains and massive cost reductions prove the viability of the investment model
  • The technical challenges of a city-wide fibre network and enabling advanced mobile services
  • Disaster Mitigation – preparedness for responses to the unexpected
  • Public Services – the massive impacts on local government and public services delivery
  • The leadership perspectives of the Mayors for both the City and the surrounding County
  • Sustainability – how green is your city?


ICF The 2013 ICF Summit (‘Building the Broadband Economy’) is an international gathering of mayors, chief administrative officers, chief information officers and economic development leaders from cities, states and regions around the world.  Produced in partnership with the Polytechnic Institute of New York University, the annual Summit is a unique opportunity to learn from the world's most dynamic communities how to use information and communications technology to build prosperous, inclusive and sustainable communities.  

On the last day of the Study Tour we will attend ICF’s annual awards ceremony and discover which city will be named as the Intelligent Community of the Year.  This event includes an address by the Intelligent Community Visionary of the Year and presentation of the ICF Founders Awards.

By combining an in-depth visit to Chattanooga and the high-level networking potential of ICF this Study Tour will provide powerful insights to inform developments in the UK.

The Study Tour will bring together senior delegates from across many sectors and major city administrations.  A minimum of ten and maximum of twelve delegate bookings are available for this unique and concentrated experience.


UPDATE:  recent US media attention on Chatanooga


The Study Tour will be led by Marit Hendriks and David Brunnen. 

David BrunnenDavid is Managing Editor of Groupe Intellex (an online publication focused on innovation), a non-executive director of the Foundation for Information Society Policy and writes for the UK’s Communications Management Association.  




Marit HendriksMarit is a Groupe Intellex Associate and founder/director of NG Events Ltd – managing the UK’s longest-established programme of events and conferences for digital economy champions. 

Based on the essay ‘Growing Stronger Communities’, previous Study Tours for UK delegates have visited Sweden and The Netherlands and, together with their management of the Next Generation Digital Challenge awards programme, Marit and David have a comprehensive view of digital infrastructure developments and the growth of the supporting industry.

Enquiries regarding sponsorship opportunities and delegate registrations should be directed to This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it  

Details of this Study Tour are subject to confirmation in April 2013.



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