THE PAVILIONS PHUKET BRITISH INTERNATIONAL SCHOOL, PHUKET Kata Rocks
Login | Create Account Poll Currency Weather Facebook Youtube Search

Phuket Opinion: Scoping change with a 2020 vision

PHUKET: Looking ahead, Thailand is caught between a myriad of juxtapositions – of time and technology; expansion and conservation; freedom and security... to name but a few – all of which have critical implications for Phuket.

opiniontechnologymilitarypoliticspolicetourismimmigration
By The Phuket News

Sunday 12 June 2016, 07:56AM


As part of the Phuket Smart City, tabs will be kept on everyone, everything, everywhere to ensure the utmost accountability, and security. Photo Nicolas Halftermeyer

As part of the Phuket Smart City, tabs will be kept on everyone, everything, everywhere to ensure the utmost accountability, and security. Photo Nicolas Halftermeyer

In this age of surveillance, as the Kingdom scrambles to modernise and upgrade its capacity to counter a multitude of global, regional, national and local “threats”, all eyes are honing in on Phuket, the Kingdom’s original “international island”, which serves as a hub, home and stomping-ground to a diverse sampling of planet Earth.

Indeed, as residents of and regulars to this 576-square-kilometre cluster of rocks in the Phang Nga Bay, we all harbour a certain love-hate relationship with our beloved host, and at some point, inevitably, will have questioned whether the reasons we originally came, and stayed, remain valid. As the weathering winds of change become ever-more prevalent across the rapidly-transforming landscape, more doubt is bound to cloud one’s contentedness with “paradise island life”.

Cue the “Phuket Smart City 2020” agenda, which has been allocated B430 million from this year’s central fiscal budget. In the words of Pracha Asawateera, head of the Software Industry Promotion Agency (SIPA) Phuket office, the funds will be used to develop “digital technology to drive urban infrastructure and also promote the island city as a smart living community focusing on safety and security in both land and marine areas”. (See story here.)

QSI International School Phuket

Simply put, the government is investing in technology and infrastructure to increase its capacity to monitor, profile and keep track of the Phuket populace, from hereon to be treated as one inclusive, programmable urban centre.

On one hand, the envisioned Smart City will be a clean, safe and efficient machine, where all runs like clockwork (think Singapore), and in which tabs are kept on everyone, everything, everywhere, ensuring maximum accountability and security and thus, it is argued, a better standard of living for all.

On the other hand, the days are numbered for many of the “entitlements” and “loopholes” that lured many to Phuket in the first place. Likewise, rights to personal space and privacy will increasingly be challenged by utilitarian appeals from the watchful eye of the state – for better or worse, only time will tell.

 

 

Comment on this story

* Please login to comment. If you do not have an account please register below by simply entering a username, password and email address. You can still leave your comment below at the same time.

Comments Here:
Comments Left:
# Characters
Username:
Password:
E-mail:
Security:

Be the first to comment.

Have a news tip-off? Click here

 

Phuket community
Still no charges for taxi driver who wiped out six vehicles, killed motorcyclist

As with every other law in Phuket (parking, speeding etc).... one rule for taxis and one rule for th...(Read More)


Saudi teen runaway leaves for Canada

A happy ending, let us hope she isn't a victim of some more patriarchal BS in way of "honor...(Read More)


Layan lockout: Public access denied amid Supreme Court wrangle for B10bn beachfront land

"Well no," well yes, it seems have a problem, first stating incorrectly sect 1336, now ign...(Read More)


Still no charges over deadly collision in Chalong that killed two tourists

One of the biggest problems in Thailand is the fact that influential people can do anything they wan...(Read More)


Local residents angered over open sewer stench

They should check out the Khlongs in kamala as well. Sweetwater Canals they are not. More inane ...(Read More)


Saudi teen runaway leaves for Canada

Hahaha,chewing letters? If one can't even correctly repeat his own writings,what else can i say....(Read More)


Six houses destroyed by fire

khun Dek is missing the point. It is all about own responsibility to have your shed, when you are &...(Read More)


Tout dumps slow loris with tourist, evades arrest at Kata Beach

Dressed in uniforms, not plain clothed. No local police available ( of course not, they are paid for...(Read More)


Local residents angered over open sewer stench

A history of filth, more than 6 years! How many meetings of multi dozens of Officials in overdecorat...(Read More)