Digitalization in the power sector continues to grow in prominence, as digital energy systems are more resilient and efficient. Since 2014, global investment in digital electricity infrastructure has been growing by around 20 percent annually. However, increased energy system digitalization can also face more complex cyber security challenges. Many cyber threat groups engage in data theft and exploit vulnerabilities in the energy sector for financial or political gain.   To help counter this threat, while still taking take advantage of the gains, the United States is working with ASEAN cities to advance capacities in the field of grid digitalization and cybersecurity.   

This project is expected to build deep capacity on smart city development in 2-3 cites and to create a best practices network across the ASEAN Smart Cities Network. The pilot cities will be expected to develop realistic smart city plans and policies that take into account evidence-based planning processes, options for more fully integrating renewables, and cybersecurity that is designed in to utility systems. The project will also improve coordination across city departments and between the cities and local stakeholders. It will also build capacity of the cities and utilities for smart city development.  

The State Department Bureau of Energy Resources and Pacific Northwest National Laboratory (PNNL) will implement the project and prepare analysis on key energy and environmental trends to inform local planning efforts.  The Global Change Assessment Model (GCAM) will support modelling and training in the pilot cities and be used to define smart city recommendations and implementation plans.