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Alexander Borodich: city digital infrastructure

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Alexander Borodich, Universa Blockchain CEO. Global cases and digitization trends for life, business and the city

In today’s world, a developer, an architect, or the government cannot build a city separately from one another — it is a multidisciplinary project. And our digital part is the modern water supply system, let’s call it this way. Why digital water supply?

Digital infrastructure is something a city of the future, a comfortable smart city cannot exist without. We want residents to have access to all the products and services available in the city, right in their apartments.

This means all the city digital services must be collected in a digital app for the residents. A mobile app that controls everything I have in my house, in my neighborhood, in the city. But this is only the upper level.

Medium level is for small businesses.

Alexander Borodich, Universa Blockchain CEO:

«If we have all the data inside the city, and it is aggregated, then a digital brain can predict for you and me where exactly a café needs to be opened and roughly what its revenue will be»

You don’t have to go around looking for a location for your café and guessing: “Will it work? Will I be able to get enough revenue here?” We as the city will know that a café can be opened at this intersection and it will generate, say, 100,000 rubles a day, because that’s what our data tell us. Therefore, it is also a platform for small business.

And thirdly, of course, it’s the management of underlying digital infrastructure. You see, currently every city has dozens to hundreds of various information systems. For some time, they used to be all isolated. Today, our back-to-back digitization platforms allow connecting them into a single network. That would create a global control point, which will be useful for company managers, for the city services, on the one hand. On the other hand, it would give us all a platform where the business and the residents would gain access to all the multitude of goods and services in the city, via the mobile application. You can call this Amazon for goods and services within the city.


There are numerous cases worldwide that demonstrate the efficiency of digitizing the city environment. However, existing developers 1.0 never studied those cases, never looked at them, as they did not see any incoming demand. However, if we look at the global practice, there are quite a few digitized cities being built under the development 2.0 concept.

Let’s look at Forect City, Malaysia, as an example. It is a huge artificial island with more than 100 billion dollars investment. It does not have any municipal transport, it recycles water and uses solar panels; it has a completely digitized city management infrastructure and economic models calculated.

There are cities built by Cisco in South Korea. Imagine a city where every company manager orders bottled water on their own, somebody orders cleaning chemicals. Group purchasing means discounts, stuff is delivered in a centralized manner, so economy of scale is evident even with this tiny piece of land. These small savings form the big picture, saving money for serious digital management of the city.


The situation in the world today is the best proof of why digital services are needed. Our children have moved to digital remote education. That is, we think: “Woah, digital education, why didn’t we invent it earlier, why isn’t it everywhere?” The government is chasing these poor five or six suppliers of Russian remote education platforms, asking for their services. This is an example of demand appearing; that is, the first thing we run into is lack of demand. There was no situation, no demand. Where was this demand?

The people designing their cottages today, they want to have a smart home with a remote control for every feature. Then, as they are building these houses, they want to have the same kind of remote for their gated community, so they can order food, water, etc., with a few taps. The developer didn’t think of this when he was building the community five or seven or ten years ago.

Today, development 2.0 allows us to set up this digital infrastructure, to plan and build effectively the cities of the future.

Alexander Borodich, Universa Blockchain CEO:

«Today, thanks to the situation worldwide, there is a demand for digitization of all services, including delivery, cleaning, laundry, repairs, anything you want — remote learning, anything. All these digital services will be organically integrated, because the demand for them is there. This demand did not exist before.»

The classical developer, classical financial entities do not see an economic opportunity in this. Therefore, the goal of development 2.0 is to create the demand, showing that this kind of cities, the Oasis Cities and other similar projects are simply more comfortable and a better place for living.

To create the demand, it has to be created among us, the future residents, above all. If we want to live there, then we will not live in what the market is building today. We will live in what we want to live in, and therefore, by creating these concepts of the future development 2.0 in different cities, in different countries, we are effectively turning the industry around to face us, the residents.


To make a breakthrough, you need to create a demo city, which someone can come to and live there for some time; a place that will be visibly better and more comfortable and pleasant and interesting, where everything is within reach. You will never know it until you try it.

Alexander Borodich, Universa Blockchain CEO:

«Here is a famous case from the Disneyland. You may remember there once was a study in which grownups were asked if they would like to come to an amusement park with life-size puppets of their childhood toys, to walk around with them, take rides and play. The answer was: “Of course we don’t”».

Following this marketing study, it was clear there is no demand for such amusement parks. And until one was created, the answer was a firm “no”. But when it was built, people started visiting it, and they realized what memories they revive from going back to their childhood.

Our job today is to immerse these ordinary people of today in to the digital, pleasant, comfortable future. Into an environment where they would like to live in. I think the top priority factor is the comfort of that environment.



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