Miami-Dade Beacon Council’s Technology Committee Introduces Project ‘1MPACT’, an Initiative Identifying and Addressing Priorities for Local Recovery Efforts

Surveys helped identify three priorities where tech and innovation partners could unite to provide solutions that contribute to the County’s talent development and economic recovery

(Miami, FL– August 13, 2020) – The Miami-Dade Beacon Council’s Technology Committee today announced the launch of ‘1MPACT’, a series of initiatives dedicated to creating impactful projects in support of our County’s recovery and talent development.  This was created as a response to the COVID-19 pandemic, with the intention of fostering innovative ways of contributing to the business community’s recovery efforts.

At the onset of COVID-19, Yuda Saydun, President of CyVent Cybersecurity and Technology Committee Chair at Miami-Dade Beacon Council, pivoted the group’s on going activities to launch an Initiative that would bring to bear the talents and resources of the innovation ecosystem in our local recovery in a manner that would engage the local community to provide tangible, relevant and immediate results.  To ensure broad engagement, a series of surveys and conversations with Technology Committee members and local business leaders sought to identify and determine some of the most pressing pain points to aid our County’s recovery efforts.

The feedback resulted in selecting three high-level priorities that led to the creation of ‘1MPACT’: a challenge to design and implement a small number of impactful projects executed over a 3-month sprint. To deliver on the priorities identified, the Technology Committee stood up  sub-committees to design, deliver and launch three projects:  a new data-driven business tool – the Distancing Detector (SDD) ;  a one-stop-shop portal to assist displaced workers looking to upskill, reskill and succeed within the current and new market demands – MiamiTech.Works; and a regional collaboration by Florida International University (FIU), Miami Dade College (MDC) and the University of Miami (UM) for a workshop to develop Post Disaster Smart Response and Resilience in Critical Infrastructure, Security, and Data.

“This is a great example of the Beacon Council’s role in the community, acting as a multiplying force in terms of establishing priorities, opening doors, bringing together the public and private sectors, building bridges, generating enthusiasm and energizing coalitions that move the needle for the benefit of all,” said Yuda Saydun, President of CyVent  Cybersecurity and Technology Committee Chair at Miami-Dade Beacon Council. “In all three sub-committees, the levels of commitment, care, and enthusiasm were as remarkable as spontaneous. Each of the projects was driven by brilliant volunteers within tight deadlines and an unwavering view to deliver pragmatic, timely, relevant results.”

The Social Distancing Detector (SDD)

As part of the priorities identified through the surveys, Social Distancing Detector, a new data-driven business tool developed by one of the sub-groups, leverages the latest in machine learning and computer vision techniques to identify adherence of social distancing guidelines. This tool is an open-source, free to the public technology that focuses on helping physical locations better manage their spaces for safety and health. SDD is able to analyze a video feed in real-time and identify people working, walking, or standing in the subject area. It dynamically measures the space to understand size, proportions and distance to ensure all people identified are in a safe distance from each other. This tool was developed at a zero-cost option during these unprecedented and difficult times and is readily available for small or large businesses in Miami-Dade County. In addition, the Technology Committee’s sub-group lead will be hosting two IT Workshops to assist individuals, companies, and government institutions to implement this tool and related solutions.

“We wanted to directly address the impact COVID-19 had on our regional economy, bringing our tourism, retail, and commercial centers to a near halt. Through technological innovation, we’re using the latest Artificial Intelligence and Computer Vision Science to enable businesses to reopen safely, effectively, and without driving any additional operational cost,” said Charles Irizarry, CEO & Co-Founder of Strata.ai.

 

MiamiTech.Works Online Portal

Modeled after General Assemb.ly’s efforts in other markets, the second initiative identified, MiamiTech.Works, is a one-stop-shop portal created by a coalition of Miami’s business, education and government leaders combining resources to help local citizens impacted by the economic slowdown from Coronavirus. The portal’s main objective is to connect those recently laid off or facing reduced working hours with local reskilling opportunities, personalized career development coaching and one-on-one access to hiring managers of companies currently hiring. The portal is set to launch today with a tentatively 3-month pilot. Key partners include General Assemb.ly, CareerScore, 4Geeks Academy, Benjamin Douglas, Kaseya, FIU, Ironhack, Miami-Dade Beacon Council, Miami Dade College, Microsoft, Singularity University: Miami Chapter, University of Miami and Wyncode.

“We believe that the new MiamiTech.Works portal, a one-stop shop for those seeking upskilling, reskilling and (re-)employment opportunities, will add tremendous value for those impacted during the current socio-economic environment. I am thrilled to see our amazing coalition partners come together to provide such great resources for our growing tech community,” stated Ken Finneran, VP, Global Human Resources, of Kaseya.

 

Regional Security Workshop

The third priority—cybersecurity—is being addressed cooperatively by three academic partners hosting a regional security workshop: University of Miami, Florida International University and Miami Dade College.  The workshop will bring together key stakeholders dealing with critical infrastructure resources in South Florida to discuss and address the most pressing cybersecurity issues. The goal of the workshop is to explore and enable smarter response techniques and more resilient critical infrastructure components that involve cybersecurity and data.

“We are very excited to join forces as part of the ‘1MPACT’ initiative from the Beacon Council. This collaboration will elevate South Florida as a regional hub for cybersecurity education and talent. The first workshop announced today will be a great opportunity to bring together industry leaders, practitioners and students,” said Antonio Delgado, Dean of Engineering, Technology and Design at Miami Dade College.

 

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About the Miami‐Dade Beacon Council

Miami‐Dade Beacon Council is the official economic development organization for Miami‐Dade County. Its mission is to increase jobs and investment through marketing Miami as a world-class business destination; helping grow local companies; and shaping Miami-Dade’s economic future. Since 1985, the organization has assisted more than 1,200 businesses to expand in or relocate to Miami-Dade creating over 100,000 direct and indirect jobs combined and driving more than $6.6 billion in new capital investments. A professional staff and volunteer community leaders work together to promote Miami-Dade as a world‐class 21st century community at the forefront of a changing global economy. For more information: www.beaconcouncil.com.

 

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