News Release

Cisco and OneCommunity Implement Smart+Connected Communities Pilot Programs to Revitalize Northern Ohio

Cisco Press Release

21st-Century Technologies and Agile Delivery Models Improve Access to Public Services and Enhance Economic, Social and Environmental Sustainability

CLEVELAND and SAN JOSE, Calif. - July 21, 2010 - Cisco today announced that it has joined with OneCommunity, a leader in incubating public-private partnerships and a nonprofit broadband service provider supporting northern Ohio, to transform the region with dynamic citizen and government programs. The pilot programs, which are part of Cisco's global Smart+Connected Communities efforts, are implementing Cisco technologies via a service delivery platform to enhance citizen quality of life, spur economic development and reduce the cost of government operations. The programs will focus on workforce retraining, public safety, access to healthcare, and public services. 
Northern Ohio has a rich history in industry and manufacturing innovation. Leaders in both the public and private sectors are turning to next-generation technologies to help transform the region's economy to one based on healthcare, education and technology. To address this transition, Cisco and OneCommunity have aligned with local governments to share the digital infrastructure, capabilities and services that underpin dedicated citizen services and public safety programs.


  • The Cisco Smart+Connected Communities initiative helps transform physical communities into connected communities that realize sustainable economic growth, a better quality of life, a greener footprint and reduced government expenses. The initiative provides both the thought leadership and a shared services platform for execution.
  • The OneCommunity/Cisco regional revitalization programs include:
    • Public WiFi and Training to Improve Workforce. OneCommunity is launching an ambitious digital literacy program with more than a dozen training partners.  Together this consortium of nonprofits will provide digital literacy training, technical support, and help address 30,000 households over the next two years.  Many of these households are strategically located in OneCommunity's Cisco Mesh cloud, which provides free public WiFi into low income neighborhoods. Each participant in this free training program will develop a personal plan on how their household intends to benefit from these new tools and skills such as job searches, improved access to health information or other government services online.
    • Connected Incident Response. To improve citizen safety, Cuyahoga County is using the OneCommunity Service Delivery Platform to immediately assemble multidisciplinary emergency response teams, regardless of their location or communications media. Taking advantage of approximately 3,000 Cisco Unified IP Phones deployed in Cuyahoga County, fire, police, medical, hazardous-materials teams and other first responders can come together more quickly, with the right expertise, to more effectively and quickly address incidents, potentially saving lives. Additionally, OneCommunity's existing deployment of Cisco Unified Communications in Cuyahoga County enables seamless communications between responders and government agencies. Municipalities are now piloting the shared service as well.
    • In addition, the city of Akron is collaborating with OneCommunity and Cisco to provide enhanced wireless communications services for voice, video and data to police officers in the field. Squad cars with wireless connectivity will enable officers responding to an event to access graphics or maps instantly. Akron's "intelligence-led policing" infrastructure utilizes video feeds to transmit suspects' pictures in real time, thus potentially reducing capture time for alleged criminals and increasing citizen safety.

    • Online Healthcare Education and Telemedicine. Cisco is working with OneCommunity to begin to deliver healthcare education to the region's school system.  These education programs are designed to take an aggressive approach to disease prevention and reduce the need for future care, treatment expenses and child/parent absences due to illness.
    • In addition, OneCommunity intends to provide a range of collaborative technology solutions including Cisco TelePresenceTM, HealthPresenceTM and WebExTM services to select schools and colleges to enable doctor visits to be conducted remotely by video. The collaboration solution will make possible regular assessments of students' health and enable third-party teaching experts to address classes remotely to enhance the learning experience.

    • Online Community Services. The city of Akron is using Cisco's network-driven collaboration technologiesto deliver several community services via advanced online portals. Akron citizens will be able to access incident reports from a Web-based portal that will allow a resident to locate a specific incident report by searching by name, address or date, and view it on the screen or download it in PDF format. Additionally, the system will automatically send an e-mail report to a victim or witness if the police officer is provided with an e-mail address.
    • A second application will permit the city to schedule community activities in more than 100 separate facilities at Akron's new Community Learning Centers, which the city operates after school, on weekends, and in the summer. Akron is rebuilding every public school as a Community Learning Center, with 17 schools already completed. Four more Community Learning Centers are coming online, seven are under construction, and more are in the design and planning stages. The Community Learning Center Service Request and Reservation System will automate the management of shared spaces and reduce the time associated with service requests for after-hour events, improve customer satisfaction, reduce paperwork, and reconcile calendaring systems between the school district and the city.

Supporting Quotes

  • Wim Elfrink, chief globalisation officer and executive vice president, Cisco Services
  • "Cisco believes communities that are able to use the latest advances in information technology will be best positioned to meet the demands for long-term social, economic and environmental sustainability. In working with a dedicated organization such as OneCommunity, Cisco is able to help equip this region with the solutions and services necessary to become a smart and connected community and propel economic growth, security and the quality of living for citizens."

  • Donald L. Plusquellic, mayor, city of Akron, Ohio
  • "The northern Ohio region is undergoing a major evolution, and the city of Akron is proud to be at the center of this move toward innovation. The programs established in tandem with Cisco and OneCommunity are helping Akron recognize dynamic citizen and government services and reduce government operating costs. Furthermore, these initiatives provide 21st-century learning opportunities, preventative healthcare education and critical workforce regeneration to meet the shifting priorities of the local economy."

  • Scot Rourke, president and CEO, OneCommunity
  • "OneCommunity is dedicated to providing the thought leadership and technical platform to transform. Our many regional public and private partnerships, combined with our sharing of resources, has begun to enhance our global competiveness, attract investment, and create jobs. In working with an innovative company like Cisco, we are thrilled to see a series of promising pilot programs taking shape across the region and transforming the way individuals live, learn and conduct business within our communities."

Supporting Resources

About OneCommunity

OneCommunity drives economic development by providing affordable, robust broadband technologies and related programs that accelerate the use of IT to transform health, education, workforce and government. Established as a nonprofit in 2003, OneCommunity seeks to transform Northern Ohio into a technologically competitive, 21st century, connected community. We connect by providing access and tools, and we enable by motivating and building capacity - resulting in effective use of technology to transform our region. For more information, please visit

About Cisco Systems

Cisco, (NASDAQ: CSCO), the worldwide leader in networking that transforms how people connect, communicate and collaborate, this year celebrates 25 years of technology innovation, operational excellence and corporate social responsibility. Information about Cisco can be found at For ongoing news, please go to

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Cisco, the Cisco logo, Cisco Systems and Cisco TelePresence are registered trademarks or trademarks of Cisco Systems, Inc. and/or its affiliates in the United States and certain other countries. All other trademarks mentioned in this document are the property of their respective owners. The use of the word partner does not imply a partnership relationship between Cisco and any other company. This document is Cisco Public Information.

Notes to editors:

Northern Ohio Revitalization Press Conference

Cisco will host a press conference later today with representatives from Northern Ohio to discuss the initiatives outlined in this announcement.


Wednesday, July 21, 2010 at 1:00 p.m. Eastern/10:00 a.m. Pacific


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