25 November 2021

CAIC-SIUD 2021: Keynote Address by Dr. Mohammed Ali Berawi on Smart Infrastructure and Digital Twin

AUN Writer Team

By Carlos Harry De Taza, AUN Intern

The keynote address on Smart Infrastructure and Digital Twin was delivered by Dr. Mohammed Ali Berawi on Day 2 of the CSID AUN-SCUD International Conference on Sustainable Infrastructure and Urban Development last October 14, 2021. 

In his speech, Dr. Berawi highlighted the role of digital technology in transforming cities and fulfilling Sustainable Development Goal (SDG) 9: Industry, Innovation, and Infrastructure. This is guided by the three-pronged principles of Industry 4.0, Nature 5.0, and Society 5.0. The fourth industrial revolution (Industry 4.0) must come together with the environment in mind (Nature 5.0) and the retooling of society with the right skillsets (Society 5.0). 

One way of using digital tech for smart infrastructure is the use of a “digital twin.” A digital twin is the virtualization of a city or infrastructure development. By creating an identical operating system of city management, it allows stakeholders to simulate proposed changes of policy or project development before implementing them. Using smart technology solutions, planners and managers can implement projects with better efficiency.

Whereas conventional projects take longer to study, plan, and make changes of, the use of digital technology allows stakeholders to come with timely and more nuanced solutions. Recent developments due to the pandemic, for example, has allowed people from around the world to collaborate virtually.

With this, Dr. Berawi highlights the aims of value-added infrastructure development: to optimize stakeholder benefits through better communication, collaboration, and coordination. Examples of these are infrastructure projects in Indonesia, such as the Sunda Strait Bridge and the PRASTI Tunnel Concept.

To conclude, Dr. Berawi argues that the transformation through digital technology will require us to adapt – train more data scientists, upgrade existing skills, and continuously retool universities and industries. While he recognizes the existing digital gap between urban-rural and rich-poor communities, he stresses that the adaption of digital technology can only bring benefits to developing regions by providing efficient and faster solutions.