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March 21, 2007
Toronto links with international digital cities network
Toronto Mayor David Miller signed an agreement with San Francisco Mayor Gavin Newsom today that links Toronto with other international cities and regions in a global Digital City Network, which supports the commercialization of innovative digital media technologies and advancements. Cities that have signed on to the Network that San Francisco is spearheading include: Paris, France; Prague, Czech Republic; Dublin, Ireland; Guadalajara, Mexico; Skopje, Macedonia and Singapore.

“Businesses in Toronto’s ICT sector constantly develop and use new technology to increase the city’s international profile and presence in the global economy,” said Mayor David Miller. “Developing partnerships with our international counterparts through initiatives, such as the Digital City Network are a positive step towards increasing global connectivity and collaboration.”

“We’re delighted to be working with Toronto on this initiative,” Mayor Gavin Newsom said. “Both of our cities have strong ICT-based industries and creative enterprises. This agreement lays the foundation for the commercialization of new, innovative technology that will enable closer ties between our two cities and other regions around the world.”

The signing was facilitated through video conference held at Autodesk in Toronto and at San Francisco State University (SFSU) and can be viewed at

The event was supported by Foreign Affairs and International Trade Canada and by the Consulate General of Canada in San Francisco and Telemerge Canada.

The initiative is lead by Joaquin Alvarado, Director of the Institute of Next Generation Internet at SFSU. “The Digital City Network involves cities and regions that we believe are forward-looking,” said Alvarado. “Toronto was chosen to be part of the Network because of its New Media and IT industry. We were looking to partner with cities and regions that we believe are creative and technological hubs. Toronto was a perfect choice to join the Network.”

Alvarado was introduced to City Council in March 2006. At that time, he invited Toronto to be part of the Digital City Network and was encouraged to move forward to strengthen the ties between the two cities. The signing of the Digital City Network Agreement formalizes this relationship.

The nine objectives outlined in the Digital City Network Agreement are to:
  • broker international relationships between educational, business, and community-based digital media organizations
  • create new business to business ventures between jurisdictions
  • support the growth and innovation of existing digital media businesses
  • develop new cutting-edge digital media companies in each location
  • encourage private and public investment in advanced digital technologies and linkages between jurisdictions
  • expand workforce development and education opportunities in digital media
  • provide technical support for digital media incubators and business accelerators
  • develop strategies to respond to the rapid changes in new media technologies
  • inform shareholders about emerging digital media issues, innovations and best practices.

Toronto ICT firms have already designed and implemented some of the world’s most advanced broadband networks and technologies for business, research and educational applications.

Projects the Digital City Network may work on include:
  • promoting cultural exchanges through specific digital media projects
  • identifying and supporting the development of business to business relationships, co-productions, joint ventures and investment opportunities
  • conducting joint research and development projects
  • defining Next Generation Internet in terms of networking standards and protocols
  • creating cost-effective opportunities for existing companies and to experiment, develop and prototype products using next generation internet technology.

For more information about the City of Toronto’s ICT cluster, visit

Toronto is Canada’s largest city and sixth largest government, and home to a diverse population of about 2.6 million people. It is the economic engine of Canada and one of the greenest and most creative cities in North America. In the past three years Toronto has won more than 50 awards for quality and innovation in delivering public services. Toronto’s government is dedicated to prosperity, opportunity and liveability for all its residents.

View the backgrounder at

Media contacts:
Rob Berry, Manager, Sector and Strategic Partnerships, 416-392-3387, 416-576-7026,
Joaquin Alvarado, Director, Institute of Next Generation Internet, 415-405-4059, 510-761-0657,



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