WITSA Announces 2020 Global ICT Excellence Award Winners

Mar 28
Aug 28

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASENovember 19, 2020Contact: Anders Halvorsenahalvorsen@witsa.org +1 571 265-5964Penang, Malaysia: On the second day of the 2020 TECHFEST Live! x ROAD-TO-WCIT Malaysia hybrid event, the World Information Technology and Services Alliance (WITSA) announced that twelve private and public sector organizations from four different continents were selected to receive the 2020 WITSA Global ICT Excellence Awards, including the special WITSA Chairman’s Awards. WITSA is the leading recognized voice of the global ICT industry, whose members from over 80 countries and economies represent more than 90% of the world’s ICT market. The WITSA Awards recognize the entities that made the most significant contributions to mankind in 2020“Never before in WITSA’s 20 years of hosting the Global ICT Excellence Awards have we had the honor of reviewing as many well-qualified, unique and remarkable award submissions”, said WITSA Chairman Yvonne Chiu.The nominations submitted to this year’s awards program spanned WITSA’s entire global membership, from Nigeria to Bangladesh, from Argentina to the United Kingdom and beyond. “This year’s awards are happening at a very unique time in history. In spite of going through a global pandemic we are delighted that we will be able to recognize some of the very best ICT solutions from governments, institutions, individuals and industry”, stated WITSA’s Secretary General, Dr. Jim Poisant.The WITSA Global ICT Excellence Awards is one of WITSA’s most popular programs. Started 20 years ago, at the 2000 World Congress on IT in Taipei, WITSA has – as the leading recognized international voice of the global ICT industry – utilized its unprecedented reach into the ICT industry in over 80 countries, from Australia and New Zealand, to Bangladesh and Malaysia, to South Africa and Nigeria, to Argentina and Canada, in order to select the most impactful and innovative candidates from every corner of the world.Over the past 20 years, WITSA has recognized its award winners on the world stage, starting in Taipei, to Adelaide (Australia), Athens (Greece), Austin (Texas), Amsterdam (The Netherlands), Montreal (Canada), Guadalajara (Mexico), Brasilia (Brazil), Hyderabad (India) and Yerevan (Armenia).What makes the Global ICT Excellence Awards unique is that nominations are made by experts that know the industry best; the national and regional WITSA ICT industry associations. With unparalleled insight, the most innovative and impact solutions are brought before an independent panel of judges, consisting of select industry leaders and luminaries from key international organizations, corporations and government entities, who had to spend countless hours reviewing nearly 130 submissions.The 2020 WITSA Awards was remarkable for its large number of highly qualified nominees, received from WITSA’s network of ICT industry associations in over 80 countries around the world. WITSA therefore decided to also recognize the most noteworthy Runner-up candidates and Merit winners. While not being selected as winners of one of the award categories, merit winners nevertheless displayed first-rate use of ICT.The following are the winners of the 2020 WITSA Global ICT Excellence Awards:

  1. 2020 Chairman’s Award (Two Awardees):-PEMANDU Associates Sdn Bhd (for their Global COVID-19 Index - GCI)- Intel (For their Intel Education AI for Youth Program)
  1. COVID-19 Tech Solutions for Cities and Localities:- Keelung City Government & Industrial Technology Research Institute: For AI-LiDAR Based People Flow Management System for Prevention of COVID-19- Taichung and III Regional Industry Service: For Sustainable Urban Business Solution
  2. COVID-19 Tech Solutions for Countries and Regions: Taiwan Ministry of Health and Welfare: For a pandemic preventive system from border to community: Taiwan model (Department of Information Management, Ministry of Health and Welfare, Taiwan)
  3. COVID-19 Best Industry Solutions:- Acer: AEB (Acer e-enabling Service Business Inc.) and the Taiwan healthcare Associated Infection and Antimicrobial Resistance Surveillance System (THAS): For iPLATO
  4. 2020 Public/Private Partnership Award: Chipside
  5. 2020 Digital Opportunity/Inclusion Award:- Arbusta- Spark for Software Solutions: doContact Series
  6. 2020 Sustainable Growth Award: Telekom Research & Development Sdn Bhd: For Smart Water Integrated Management System (SWIMS)
  7. 2020 Innovative E-Health Solutions Award: Fujitsu
  8. 2020 Digital Innovation Award: Tookitaki Holding Pte Ltd
  9. 2020 E-Education & Learning Award: Intel

Finally, WITSA recognized 10 Runners-up and 21 Merit awards.About WITSAThe World Information Technology and Services Alliance (WITSA) is the leading recognized international voice of the global ICT industry, whose members from over 80 countries and economies represent more than 90 percent of the world ICT market. WITSA is dedicated to advocating policies that advance industry growth and development; facilitating international trade and investment in ICT products and services; strengthening WITSA’s national industry associations; and providing members with a broad network of professional contacts. WITSA hosts the World Congress on Information Technology (WCIT), the premier global industry sponsored ICT conference.WITSA members are leaders in a globally interconnected marketplace. Because the challenges facing the ICT industry are undisputedly global in nature, WITSA members work together to achieve a shared vision on important issues of common interest. WITSA makes it possible for its members — ranging from Mongolia and Argentina to Kenya and the United States — to identify common issues and priorities, exchange valuable information, and present a united position on industry issues.For more information on WITSA, please visit www.witsa.orgThe winners of the 2020 WITSA Awards are listed below:


Intel: For their Intel Education AI for Youth Program

[Also, Winner of the 2020 E-Education & Learning Award – see below] Intel launched a comprehensive artificial intelligence (AI) readiness program, Intel® AI for Youth, in 2019. Driven in partnership with governments and academia worldwide, the program empowers youth to create their own social impact projects by enabling them to acquire technical skills in data science, computer vision, and coding, as well as teaching social skills focused on AI ethics and biases, and AI solutions-building. Participant projects have included a system to convert handwritten complaints by rural citizens to a digitized format that can be sent to government representatives, a project to predict depression among school children, a mini robot to remind elderly people to take their medications, and an AI drone to search for missing people. The Intel AI for Youth program is currently available in India, Germany, Poland, Singapore, and South Korea. We also launched a digital readiness program aimed at helping policy makers and government officials to connect, share, and learn a range of emerging technologies such as AI and 5G. This hands-on, immersive workshop focuses on using these technologies for improved governance and includes discussions around multiple use cases in areas such as smart cities, healthcare, and transportation.Already, over 10,000 high school and vocational students have enrolled in this initiative in UK, USA, China, India, S Korea, Poland, Germany, Singapore, Israel, Russia, and Indonesia. Intel to train 30 million people in AI by 2030.Contact person: Stuart Walker, Head of Education UK, Intel, stuart.walker@intel.comFor more information, see: https://www.intel.co.uk/content/www/uk/en/it-managers/ai-youth-education.html

PEMANDU Associates Sdn Bhd: For the Global COVID-19 Index (GCI)

The Global COVID-19 Index (GCI) is the world’s first holistic and comprehensive index on COVID-19. It rates and ranks countries based on how well they are coping with the COVID-19 pandemic. It is a fully data-driven and objective approach designed to assist decision-makers make critical decisions in the fight against COVID-19. The GCI is developed by PEMANDU Associates in partnership with the Ministry of Science, Technology and Innovation of Malaysia, and is an initiative that will be kept live at least until the end of 2021.The GCI is designed to assist countries in managing the COVID-19 pandemic - mitigating its severity and planning for their recovery from the crisis. It can help governments answer the key questions of when and how they should impose or relax their lockdowns with minimal guessing. It can also indicate when heavier measures may be needed to reinforce their healthcare system’s capacity. With its global rating system, it can also help answer the key question of what measures appear to be working or not working for countries around the world. From there, best practices can be derived and considered for countries with similar demographic, healthcare and socio-economic parameters. Businesses would benefit from knowing where their base country is on the severity-recovery scale. For countries who are on the road to recovery, knowing this can help business owners prepare to resume operations. For countries who are still far from recovery or may be struggling, the index can help businesses prepare their mitigation plan over an expected timeline.More information: https://covid19.pemandu.org/


Keelung City Government & Industrial Technology Research Institute: For AI-LiDAR Based People Flow Management System for Prevention of COVID-19

The COVID-19 pandemic slowed down the growth of economy and block the interaction between people. The Taiwan government applied the Information and Communication Technology (ICT) and border control at the beginning of the pandemic. The Keelung City Government, Industrial Technology Research Institute and AEMASS formed a technological epidemic prevention team to solve this issue. The team installed the advanced Artificial Intelligent Light Detection and Ranging (AILiDAR) based people flow management system in the Keelung MiaoKou Night Market for preventing COVID-19. The system solved the detection of social distancing, crowd control of people, counting people for occupancy rate. This system applied for dealing some prevention strategies for people gathering problem.The AI-LiDAR based system is counting the time of flight of a pulse of light between an object and a detector. The light is emitted from the LiDAR and is reflected by the object. For producing the point cloud data, the AI-LiDAR has a very high sampling rate for moving people and environment. Every second more than a million pulse-lights are emitted and detected by the AI-LiDAR. The multiple line of emitters and detectors were integrated in the compact system. The emitted-lines in a rotation dimension which is the field of view of detection area. The scanning of emitted-lines increases the measurement range and spatial resolutionContact: chrischchen@itri.org.tw; lyc2020@mail.klcg.gov.twMore information: https://witsa.org/wp-content/uploads/2020/09/CISA-Keelung-City-Government-_-Industrial-Technology-Research-Institute.pdf

Taichung and III Regional Industry Service: For Sustainable Urban Business Solution

As a transportation hub in central Taiwan, Taichung City is teeming with a rich array of cultural activities and unique industries. It attracts in average over 41.78 million visitations each year, which creates revenue of over NT$58 billion for the city. Meanwhile, statistic showed that in 2018 the average expense of Taichung citizens purchasing in shopping malls was 279,200 NT dollars, which was ranked second only to Taipei City. Nevertheless, since the beginning of 2020, COVID19 pandemic has plunged the world into deep recession, and companies have implemented remote work or diversion to maintain company operations. The lockdown of countries has brought severely damaged to many industries. Local stores were financially fragile and couldn’t maintain the business due to domestic and global travel restrictions. In view of this, Taichung City government has partnered with Institute of Information Industry(III) to develop Sustainable Urban Business Solution which connects Taichung’s key living areas and festivals using A/VR and AI solutions to offer diverse services for both residents and visitors. The goal is to create a smart application service ecosystem for the city through three modules: (1) digital content experience, (2) real and virtual data integration, and (3) business data analysis feedback. By introducing this solution, Taichung City has successfully combined local characteristics and consumption behaviors through technology interactions, encouraged the engagement of citizens and local enterprises, and pooled together open resources of the municipal government to gather huge amounts of data for analysis, thereby promoting the urban digitalization for better and improved urban and rural development to create local business opportunities.Through the aggregation and analysis of online and offline data, Sustainable Urban Business Solution drives innovative business models which effectively revive the economy of the area for the post COVID-19 economy. With the boost of virtual economy and innovative business applications, the solution offers AR/VR and numerous digital content experiences to create the possibility of and achieve heterogeneous data standardization through data serialization modules to improve the quality of data. With the engagement of Taichung City throughout the past two 16 years, the service has successfully optimized the performance of the government data base through business data analysis to establish a sustainable urban business service solution for Taichung.Contact: yuwenhuang@iii.org; lu23199760@gmail.com; garhung@iii.org.twMore information: https://witsa.org/wp-content/uploads/2020/09/CISA-Taichung-and-III-Regional-Industry-Service.pdf


Taiwan Ministry of Health and Welfare: A pandemic preventive system from border to community: Taiwan model (Department of Information Management, Ministry of Health and Welfare, Taiwan)

Worldwide, the COVID-19 pandemic has led to 17 million confirmed cases, half a million confirmed deaths, and the numbers just keep rising. When COVID-19 virus initially caused an outbreak in China, researchers at Johns Hopkins University, USA, had forecasted that due to the geographical relationship between China and Taiwan, Taiwan would be second most affected country by COVID-19 virus. However, Taiwan has defied those expectations. Up until July 31th, 2020, Taiwan had only 467 Covid-19 cases, 7 confirmed deaths and only 1.5% case fatality rate (CFR) (shown in Figure 1). The successful response to Covid-19 was not a matter of luck, but the result of careful planning and digital transformation. Taiwan has performed well in combating COVID-19 this time and this may be attributed to the lessons learned from the 2003 SARS outbreak and the actions took for deployment of Information Communication Technologies (ICTs). The SARS experience had prepared the Taiwan government and citizens to react to the COVID19 pandemic more promptly and stay cautious. Meanwhile, it has forced government to seek effective solutions to include ICTs to respond effectively. ICTs plays an essential role in the combating the COVID-19 pandemic in Taiwan, especially its roles as an information-driven provided tremendous help in containing the COVID-19 virus, which was not seen during the SARS pandemic.The new Pandemic Preventive System from Border to Community activated an information-driven inter-organizational system and removed government department’s silos. Until now, the new Pandemic Preventive System from Border to Community is only used for entrants entering Taiwan. In the future expansion, it might be considered to connect with systems in other countries around the world.Contact: ccparng@mohw.gov.twMore information: https://witsa.org/wp-content/uploads/2020/09/CISA-Ministry-of-Health-and-Welfare.pdf


Acer: AEB (Acer e-enabling Service Business Inc.) and the Taiwan healthcare Associated Infection and Antimicrobial Resistance Surveillance System (THAS)

Acer e-Enabling Service Business Inc. (hereinafter "AEB") was incorporated in 2012 as a key strategic investment in the IT service sector of the global IT leader Acer Group. AEB provides cloud platform and digital solutions to enterprises looking to outperform competition in the era of digital transformation. The company aims to create and integrate value for stakeholders in the ecosystem of IT vendors and enterprise client, where AEB has over 2500 plus long-term corporate accounts and over 200 first tier partners of different domains around the world.There are many factors contributing to Taiwan CDC’s success, a well architect IT platform that can provide real-time and critical data to medical personnel when it accounts most certainly is an indispensable one. The THAS developed by AEB helps officials and professionals to stay updated and ahead of the curve.Contact: Olive C. Chang: Olive.C.Chang@aceraeb.comMore information: https://witsa.org/wp-content/uploads/2020/09/CISA-Acer.pdf


For providing free remote consultation and COVID-19 reporting tools to 3,000 GP practices. PLATO Healthcare is a London based innovation company dedicated to mobile health since 2006. iPLATO's evidence based mobile health solutions have proven to improve patient access to healthcare, to enable powerful health promotion targeted at people at risk and to support people with long term conditions. Serving millions of patients and thousands of healthcare professionals every day iPLATO has emerged as the leader in mobile health. Across this network the company is running campaigns to promote smoking cessation, weight loss, childhood immunization and pandemic awareness as well as mobile disease management services for people with diabetes, hypertension, epilepsy and HIV.iPLATO Healthcare's mission is to, in partnership with healthcare professionals and provider organizations, support patients in achieving longer, healthier lives. IPLATO, the developers of myGP, have created two new-to-market tools to help GP practices manage their patients during the current Covid-19 pandemic. Three thousand GP practices in the UK currently use one or several products on the myGP platform. In May 2020, video consultations on the myGP platform have increased by over 1,000% with practices switching their appointments to video or telephone consultations. To help practices to continue their work, without putting themselves or their patients at risk, iPLATO has developed a ‘lite’ version of its remote consultation offering.Contact: Louise Kitchingham, Senior Communications Manager, iPLATO HealthcareLouise.Kitchingham@iplato.com | Tel. +44 20 3915 3946 | www.mygp.com | www.iplato.comMore information: https://witsa.org/wp-content/uploads/2020/09/tecUK-3_iPlato.docx

Public/Private Partnership Award


The UK Government have declared the end of carbon fuel vehicles by 2035. It has also announced that the UK should be greenhouse gas net neutral by 2050, the world’s first major economy to do so. To achieve these aims, the UK Government has published the national industrial plan. This is then passed down to local government (regional, city and town leaders) to implement with their local industry strategy. Sustainable developments goals include a section on smart cities and 11.6 on reducing adverse impact of cities.Chipside has worked with 170 UK Local Authorities for many years on transforming local government and bringing it into the digital age. It has formed a unique public / private partnership with 170 Local Authorities (these range from regional government to smart city managers to town and village leaders) to ensure that sustainability is put at the heart of everything that the parking and traffic managers do. This working group, run entirely voluntarily, rather than for commercial gain, encompasses some 20 million people within the UK population of 65Million. Managing traffic and reducing emissions to zero is easy. You simply ban the car. However, personal cars are often a lifeline for the citizen to improve their financial status, to keep themselves fed and to provide a better future for their children. Whilst this is true of the UK, it is also true of all countries of the world. And a key part of delivering SDG 8. Chipside has developed systems that provide their smart city managers with the ability to manage driver behavior in real time. This is a mix of big open data, real time data analytics and control room display terminals. The tools developed allow managers to deploy a mix of pricing, regulation change and social considerations to persuade drivers to change their behavior. Two (2) citizens a minute are joining the service – every minutes, 24 hours a day. Some examples are attached as evidence, but of note isContact: Paul J Moorby OBE FRSA, Managing Director | Chipside Limitedpaul.moorby@chipside.com Tel: 0345 470 9009More information: https://witsa.org/wp-content/uploads/2020/09/tecUK-4_Chipside.docx

Digital Opportunity/Inclusion Award


Arbusta is a seven (7) years company with operations in Argentina, Colombia and Uruguay, delivering quality assurance services, providing first job opportunities for underprivileged youth, serving global major brands. We are a company where ongoing learning and service delivery are part of the business model, where our team's capabilities evolve by learning by doing while addressing our clients’ business problems. We are 303 people in Buenos Aires, Medellín, Montevideo and Rosario. Our team consists of 95% young millennials and centennials that come from fragile socio-economic backgrounds. Today, digital skills are inherent to young people, as well as universal, regardless of geography and education. In Arbusta we unleash millennial talent and prepare ourselves for the future.What we try to do at Arbusta is to develop talent to unlock the potential in this forgotten group of people. They are millennials, centennials, and most importantly: digital natives. They know how to work with mobiles, they are very familiar with technology. So our hypothesis is, if Arbusta can manage to train them, guide them in their weaknesses and strengths, we can develop their potential. Arbusta can then package those skills together as a team and provide that service to clients. We believe in identifying the potential talent that is not yet discovered by the industry. We trust in that talent, we can manage that talent and place them in a team.Contact: Noel Alvarez/ Coordinadora de Comunicacionesnoel.alvarez@arbusta.net @arbusta.net / +5491124518001Arbusta/Buenos Aires, ArgentinaMore information: https://witsa.org/wp-content/uploads/2020/08/Argentina_Reporte-Arbusta-ENG.pdf

Spark for Software Solutions: doContact Series

doContact series, is a series of mobile applications in Egypt for deaf and dumb (children and adults) to help them communicate more easily with normal people. It includes the following applications:

  1. doContact, for children to help them communicate with others
  2. iTalk, for adults to help them communicate with others
  3. iWrite, for both adults and children to enable them to express their needs by writing

These applications are designed with a very simple interface that is very easy to use. This series of applications is mainly based on visual images that will be used in expressing the need or feeling. The main objective of these applications is to make the disabled person express his needs & communicate with others in a very normal manner either by speaking images (like in doContact and iTalk) or by writing simple sentences (iWrite). All of the applications in this series have won prizes in Tamkeen contest which is organized by the Egyptian ministry of communication on yearly basis, as follows:

  • doContact, won a prize in Tamkeen 5, held in 2018.
  • iTalk and iWrite, won prizes in Tamkeen 6, held in 2019.

It is worth to mention that Tamkeen is not just a contest, but it is a partnership to encourage the ICT community in Egypt to contribute in enhancing the lives of the disabled people in Egypt and making their lives easier. Also, Tamkeen makes use of these applications by spreading them in the relevant communities like schools, education centers. etc.Contact: Salema Ahmed, Founder & COOTel: +202 2630 7031 | Email: salema.ahmed@spark-sol.com | Website:www.spark-sol.comMore information: https://witsa.org/wp-content/uploads/2020/08/Egypt_Etisal-WITSA-Award-5-doContact-series-V2.0.pdf

Sustainable Growth Award

Telekom Research & Development Sdn Bhd: Smart Water Integrated Management System (SWIMS)

As the incumbent service provider in Malaysia, Telekom Malaysia (TM) via its innovation arm, TM R&D, is leading the market in the Internet of Water (IoW) solution, capitalizing its first-to-market advantages in end-to-end enterprise capabilities. Smart Water Integrated Management System (SWIMS) is a leading IoT case study developed for Air Selangor (AS) as part of its digital transformation journey to shape the next era of autonomous network in water supply management.SWIMS offers tremendous business benefits, and this can best be viewed from operational efficiency perspective. Via initial installations in 3,300 sites in Sepang district of Selangor, SWIMS had transformed Air Selangor’s operation going from manual water meters and workforce-heavy meter reading activities, into fully digitalized operation in terms of control, maintenance, analytics and even workforce management. Usage visibility of each user has been improved by 3,000% which means usage figures are available daily instead of only monthly previously. The use of SWIMS coupled with automated meter reader shows an improvement in the accuracy of the meter reading by 10 to 15%, when compared to older water meters using manual reading, partly due to aging and mechanical issues. In terms of manpower, the cost for manual meter reading have been reduced close to none, requiring only supervisory monitoring of the daily water usage figures and the respective analytics.Contact: Dr. Hizamel Bin Mohd Hizan, Senior Researcher Tel. +60 19-218 0890More information: https://drive.google.com/file/d/1s31f6Hxn3zNpMTbXi7zkQREbHNEYDbtv/view?usp=sharing

Innovative E-Health Solutions Award


 Fujitsu is one of the top information and communication technology providers in the world, with over fifty years of experience in delivering technology solutions and innovation to customers around the globe.Fujitsu and their partner PolarisQB have developed a new solution combining Fujitsu’s Quantum-inspired Optimisation Services with AI/ML software to accelerate the early stages of the drug discovery process from 15 months to 7 weeks. Traditionally, the discovery of new therapeutic drugs is a slow and resource-intensive process, taking many years to develop new treatments and costing multi-millions of pounds. Underpinning the platform is the unique Digital Annealer technology from Fujitsu. They are able to search a chemical space of over several billion new molecules, a significant increase on the tens of millions of molecules that current technology is able to search today. Fujitsu’s quantum inspired technology is capable of screening this space 10,000 times faster than any other solution currently available on the market. The output is a small number of high-quality new molecules that can then be tested further for drug like properties in a laboratory.Fujitsu’s Quantum-inspired Optimisation Services offers the ability to:

  • Deliver novel molecules in 7 weeks, reducing the timeline or drug discovery from 15 months, down to 7 weeks
  • Filter Molecules up to 10,000 times faster – allowing higher accuracy predictions from a virtual molecule library of over 1 billion
  • Release pressure on R&D budgets and accelerate the backlog of discovery targets – development that has been impacted by the ongoing global pandemic

The platform has been piloted in tests on the dengue fever polymerase, and work has now progressed with COVID-19. The aim of these initial projects is to support scientists with finding a cure, where other efforts in research and drug development have been unsuccessful.Contact: Jessica Shaw, Fujitsu, jessica.shaw@fujitsu.comMore information: https://witsa.org/wp-content/uploads/2020/09/tecUK-7_Fujitsu.docx

Digital Innovation Award

Tookitaki Holding Pte Ltd</