International Forum on Smart Cities: Housing for Future

The Department of Building and Property Management under the Faculty of Accountancy and Management (FAM), and the Centre for Entrepreneurial Sustainability organised the International Forum on Smart Cities: Housing for Future via Zoom on 28 February 2024. The forum was sponsored by Sin Hee Yang Property Group, ART Capital, Mamyhome Sdn Bhd and Mr Lim Kok Kuan.

The forum provided a space for exchanging knowledge and facilitating the sharing of insights, research discoveries, and effective strategies concerning smart housing within the framework of future cities. Additionally, it sought to create a platform for Asia Pacific university partners to collectively engage in discussions and highlight their ongoing initiatives in Smart City development. These discussions covered a wide range of topics including design, expectations, financial planning, regulatory frameworks, the establishment of new smart cities, and the revitalisation of current urban areas into smart cities.

The forum kick-started with a welcome speech by Organising Chairperson and FAM Head of MBA (Building Management) and Master of Real Estate Development Programmes Sr Dr Elia Syarafina binti Abdul Shakur and an opening speech by Vice President for R&D and Commercialisation Prof Ts Dr Faidz bin Abd Rahman.

Prof Faidz delivering his opening speech

Prof Faidz said in his speech, “At this forum, we are not merely discussing gadgets and gizmos; we are delving into the very essence of what makes a city livable, sustainable, and responsive to the needs of its residents. Our objectives are clear: to facilitate the sharing of insights, research findings, and best practices related to smart housing, and to establish a platform where university partners from the Asia Pacific region can collaboratively discuss and showcase their ongoing efforts in smart city development. Hence, I am delighted to have a distinguished lineup of speakers from Malaysia and abroad here with us today to share their invaluable research outcomes at this forum.”

Dr Elia delivering her welcome speech

Dr Elia said, “This forum provides a platform for the experts to present their findings, share insights and best practices, facilitate knowledge exchange and talk about experiences related to the key theme of smart cities in the context of housing for the future. Housing is not merely about providing shelter; it is about creating sustainable, intelligent living spaces that adapt to the needs of our evolving communities. As we navigate through this forum, we aim to discover and discuss groundbreaking ideas that will shape the way we approach housing in the context of smart cities for the future.”

Datin Paduka Noraini delivering her keynote speech

The first keynote speech titled “Pattern Development” was delivered by Klang Royal City Council Mayor YBhg Datin Paduka TPr Hajah Noraini binti Roslan. She started by explaining the definition of a smart city and its implementation process. Next, she introduced the Klang Smart City Action Plan 2023 and shared its main focuses and directions. Additionally, Datin Paduka Noraini also explained the key components as well as the importance of smart city development.


Mr Che Rasid (left) and Mr Mohamed Jamil

Prof Anuar

Session A of the forum was titled Government Policy and Incentive. Federal Department of Town and Country Planning Malaysia (PLANMalaysia) Central Zone Project Office Director TPr Che Rasid bin Che Seman commenced the session with his presentation titled “Smart Housing in Smart Cities: Transforming Urban Living”. Following him, University of Malaya (UM) Faculty of Built Environment academic Assoc Prof TPr Hj Mohamed Jamil bin Ahmad delivered his presentation titled “Smart Housing in the Malaysian Context: Reality Check”. Both presentations shed light on the intersection of smart housing initiatives and urban development, offering valuable perspectives on the challenges and opportunities within the Malaysian landscape. Serving as the moderator for this session was FAM academic Prof Sr Dr Anuar bin Alias, who covered discussions on the intersection of government policies, incentives, and the implementation of smart housing initiatives.

Dr Sasmoko (left) and Dr Maranatha

Session B of the forum focused on Innovation and Technology. The two presenters who shared their inputs in this session were National Central University (NCU), Taiwan researcher Dr Sasmoko and Institut Teknologi Nasional (ITN) Malang, Indonesia academic Ir Dr Maranatha Wijayaningtyas. They presented “CFD Analysis of a National Central University White Energy House” and “Smart Home with IoT-Based Application: Continuing Trends and Challenges in Indonesia” respectively.

Dr Sasmoko’s presentation provided insights into computational fluid dynamics applied to optimise energy efficiency in housing infrastructure. Dr Maranatha, on the other hand, offered valuable perspectives on the integration of Internet of Things (IoT) technologies in modern Indonesian homes. Moderated by FAM academic Dr Goh Hong Lip, this session provided a comprehensive discussion on the latest innovations and technological advancements in housing and urban development.

Prof Sara (left) and Prof Khoo

Mr Low

Dedicated to Sustainability and Impact, Session C kick-started with a presentation titled “Resilient, Smart, Sustainable & Affordable: Housing for the Future” by University of Technology Sydney, Australia Academic Prof Sara J Wilkinson. Prof Sara’s presentation enabled participants to understand the integration of resilience, sustainability, and affordability in housing designs for future urban landscapes. Next, UTAR Lee Kong Chian Faculty of Engineering and Science (LKC FES) academic Ir Prof Dr Khoo Hooi Ling @ Lai Hooi Ling’s presentation titled “Shared Space Street as An Urban Design Concept Promoting Active Transportation”, shed light on innovative urban design strategies that promote active lifestyles and sustainable modes of transport. Moderating this session was FAM Deputy Dean for Student Development and Industrial Training Mr Low Chin Kian, who ensured the dynamic exchange of ideas and perspectives on sustainable housing and urban development.

Ms Xu (left) and Dr Choong

Dr Chin

Session D, titled Consumer Perspectives, saw Xi’an Eurasia University, China academic Ms Xu Ting delivering her presentation titled “Urban Digital Twin Technology Based on Customer Application”. Ms Xu’s expertise in digital twin technology provided insights into its application from a consumer-centric standpoint within urban environments. Next, Universiti Teknologi Malaysia academic Assoc Prof Sr Dr Choong Weng Wai, who presented his research “Exploring Consumer Choices: Determinants Impacting the Selection of Smart and Sustainable Housing Options”, provided valuable insights into the factors influencing consumer preferences in the selection of smart and sustainable housing options. FAM Deputy Dean for R&D and Postgraduate Programmes Sr Dr Chin Hon Choong moderated this session, fostering an interactive discussion on understanding consumer perspectives and their implications for the development of housing solutions.

Dr Pok delivering her closing remark

The forum ended with the closing remark by FAM Dean Dr Pok Wei Fong. She concluded, “As we navigate the path towards smarter cities, let us remember that the cornerstone of future life is in innovative housing solutions. So, by fostering collaborations, embracing technology and prioritising sustainability, we can drive communities that stand as beacons of progress. Together, let’s shape a future where every home is a testament to the brilliance of smart city planning.”

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