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How a focus on innovation can improve quality of life

It’s no surprise that a strong innovation sector improves a city or country’s quality of life. Something as simple as sliced bread — a big innovation back in 1928 — has made millions of lives easier around the world. At a local level, promoting innovation in our own community is vital in helping to improve the lives of Edmontonians.

What We Can Learn From Denmark:

Take, for example, Denmark. Denmark was rated as one of 12 2018-Innovation-Champions by the Consumer Technology Association (CTA) and the second most innovative country in the European Union (only beat by Sweden) on the European Innovation Scoreboard. It has also consistently fallen into the top three of lists that gauge the quality of life in countries over the last few years.

This high ranking is due, at least in part, to the kind of innovation Denmark promotes. For one, the Danes have a major focus on Greentech. Denmark’s innovation industry has set it at the forefront of development and use of renewable energy sources. It’s their goal to get 50% of their electricity from wind power by 2020 and to be completely fossil fuel-free by 2050. This is a major step in the right direction for air quality and keeping their citizens happy, and none of it would be possible without their innovation industry.

Another example of how Denmark’s tech sector has helped improve its citizens lives — and one that hits close to home — is its public transport system. Back in 2007, Copenhagen released a new state-of-the-art driverless metro network.  Trains depart every four minutes and provide quick and easy access around the city 24/7. On top of that, it only takes 14 minutes to travel from the city centre to the Copenhagen Airport. Since 2007, Copenhagen’s train system has only expanded and is considered one of the best in the world according to Business Insider.

In Our Own City:

Back on home turf, there are already a variety of companies in our city working towards making Edmontonians’ lives easier. Jobber is a perfect example. They are a company that has created a platform for small business owners to schedule, invoice, and receive payment—all on one easy client. According to Getjobber.com, 88% of people surveyed said that Jobber made scheduling easier and saved time in their day-to-day life—with the average amount of time saved around 6.8 hours a week. This is just one example of an Edmonton-based company working to improve our city’s quality of life.

Promoting strong innovation and technology is an integral part of building Edmonton’s quality of life, and Denmark is a prime example of this. Without innovation, none of the goals we have for our city would be possible to achieve and the challenges we face would linger. Working towards a strong technology industry in Edmonton will have a long-lasting effect that we will all benefit from.

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Sources:

http://cphpost.dk/news/business/denmark-hailed-for-its-innovation.html

http://ec.europa.eu/growth/industry/innovation/facts-figures/scoreboards_en

https://www.weforum.org/agenda/2016/07/these-countries-have-the-highest-quality-of-life

https://studyindenmark.dk/news/quality-of-life-denmark-ranked-1st

https://studyindenmark.dk/why-denmark/excellence-in-education-1/creativity-and-innovation-run-deep

http://www.climateaction.org/climate-leader-papers/urban_transport_in_denmark_efficient_and_innovative

https://www.businessinsider.com.au/best-public-transportation-systems-2011-6#1-tokyo-metropolitan-10