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Possible scenario of smart and sustainable mobility

A smart city is a technologically modern urban area that uses different types of electronic methods and sensors to collect specific data. Information gained from that data is used to manage assets, resources and services efficiently; in return, that data is used to improve operations across the city. [1] This includes data collected from citizens, devices, buildings and assets that is processed and analyzed to monitor and manage traffic and transportation systems, [2] power plants, utilities, urban forestry, [3] water supply networks, waste disposal, criminal investigations, information systems, schools, libraries, hospitals, and other community services. [4] [5] Smart cities are defined to be smart both in the ways in which their local governments harness technology as well as in how they monitor, analyze, plan, and govern the city. In smart cities, the sharing of data is not limited to the city itself but also includes businesses, citizens and other third parties that can benefit from various uses of that data. Sharing data from different systems and sectors creates opportunities for increased understanding and economic benefits. [6] [7]

The smart city concept integrates information and communication technology (ICT), and various physical devices connected to the Internet of things (IOT) network to optimize the efficiency of city operations and services and connect to citizens. [8] [9] Smart city technology allows city officials to interact directly with both community and city infrastructure and to monitor what is happening in the city and how the city is evolving. ICT is used to enhance quality, performance and interactivity of urban services, to reduce costs and resource consumption and to increase contact between citizens and government. [10] Smart city applications are developed to manage urban flows and allow for real-time responses. [11] A smart city may therefore be more prepared to respond to challenges than one with a conventional "transactional" relationship with its citizens. [12] [13] Yet, the term itself remains unclear in its specifics and therefore, open to many interpretations. [14] Many cities have already adopted some sort of smart city technology.

Smart city initiatives have been criticized as largely driven by unreliable corporations, [15] [16] poorly adapted to residents' needs, [17] [18] as largely unsuccessful,[ citation needed] and as a dangerous move toward totalitarian surveillance. [19]

Background

Throughout history, cities have served as hubs of innovation, yet the digital age has introduced fresh opportunities and hurdles for urban progress. Consequently, cities are undergoing a transition into "smart cities" to foster the creation of urban environments that are more efficient, sustainable, and livable. [20] [21] [22] [23][ how?] Importantly, this transformation extends beyond the urban domain and holds considerable social, cultural, and economic significance. It requires a fundamental overhaul of both internal and external city management and operations, prompting a rethinking of urban governance, citizen involvement, and the delivery of public services. [24]

The smart city approach underscores the importance of collaboration among diverse stakeholders, including government, businesses, and citizens, to co-create innovative solutions and address intricate urban challenges. By embracing this concept, cities aim to not only upgrade their infrastructure and service provision but also to nurture social inclusion, technological adoption, and economic advancement. Leveraging digital technologies facilitates the enhancement of residents' quality of life, the promotion of sustainability, and the stimulation of economic growth by fostering the emergence of new industries and job opportunities. [24] [25] [26] [23]

The transition to a smart city entails internal changes in urban planning, management, and operation, with digital implementation serving as a driving force and objective. [27] Specifically within smart city trajectories, there is a heightened emphasis on utilizing data to inform decision-making processes. For instance, smart city technologies enable the monitoring of traffic flow, energy consumption, air quality, and various other parameters. [28] [29] Subsequently, this data can be analyzed to pinpoint areas for enhancement and optimize urban services. Moreover, smart city technologies facilitate improved communication and collaboration among different departments and stakeholders.

Information and communication technologies

The concept of smart cities emerged from global cities' recent adoption [30] of information and communications technologies for urban use, which can be used to improve efficiency, sustainability, and livability in urban environments. [31] [32] This usage is a central tenet of the smart city concept.[ citation needed] Some examples include the use of sensors, data analytics techniques, and mobile applications to oversee and regulate urban systems, such as systems of transportation, energy, and waste management. According to the concept, the real-time data generated thereby then empowers cities to make better-informed decisions and refine the services they offer. [33] [34]

However, the integration of ICTs into cities also presents challenges. These financial limitations in implementation, technical obstacles, and concerns relating to privacy and security. ICTs are also not always uniformly accessible across communities, contributing to the digital divide in which certain groups are marginalized with respect to their access to technology. [34]

Definition

While the term has gained widespread popularity, the concept of a "smart city" is amorphous and there is no shared understanding or commonly accepted definition of what the term encompasses. [20] [35]: 71  This presents a paradox, as measuring the impact and outcomes of a concept without a clear definition proves challenging. The absence of a universally accepted definition of a smart city poses a significant challenge for policymakers, planners, and researchers. Without a clear understanding of its parameters, evaluating the effectiveness and impact of smart city initiatives becomes difficult. It also hampers the ability to compare and derive insights from various smart city projects and identify best practices. [36] [37] [27]

Deakin and Al Waer list four factors that contribute to the definition of a smart city: [38]

  1. The application of a wide range of electronic and digital technologies to communities and cities.
  2. The use of ICT to transform life and working environments within the region.
  3. The embedding of such Information and Communications Technologies in government systems.
  4. The territorialisation of practices that brings ICT and people together to enhance the innovation and knowledge that they offer.

Deakin defines the smart city as one that utilizes ICT to meet the demands of the market (the citizens of the city), and states that community involvement in the process is necessary for a smart city. [39] A smart city would thus be a city that not only possesses ICT technology in particular areas, but has also implemented this technology in a manner that positively impacts the local community.

Early definitions

Early examples of smart city definitions include:

  • Caragliu et al. (2011): “A city is smart when investments in human and social capital and traditional (transport) and modern (ICT) communication infrastructure fuel sustainable economic growth and a high quality of life, with a wise management of natural resources, through participatory governance.” [40]
  • Bakici, Almirall, & Wareham (2013): “Smart city as a high-tech intensive and advanced city that connects people, information, and city elements using new technologies in order to create a sustainable, greener city, competitive and innovative commerce, and an increased life quality.” [41]
  • Nam and Pardo (2011): “A smart city infuses information into its physical infrastructure to improve conveniences, facilitate mobility, add efficiencies, conserve energy, improve the quality of air and water, identify problems and fix them quickly, recover rapidly from disasters, collect data to make better decisions, deploy resources effectively, and share data to enable collaboration across entities and domains.” [42]

These definitions underscore the significance of employing technology and data to enhance urban services and foster sustainable, liveable environments. They also stress the importance of citizen involvement and cross-sector collaboration. However, alongside these shared principles, there are notable disparities among the suggested definitions. For instance, while some definitions concentrate more on the economic advantages of smart city endeavours, others prioritize environmental or social benefits. Additionally, certain definitions give precedence to specific technologies or sectors over others. [24]

Research

The process of defining and conceptualizing smart city development is ongoing, resulting in a division within smart city research. Researchers are actively seeking interpretations that can unify and overcome the fragmentation created by the initial two decades of knowledge production in this field. The main issues surrounding early smart city debate the research include the following: [43]

  • The absence of intellectual exchange among researchers in the smart city development domain, which is crucial for advancing ICT-driven urban sustainability initiatives.
  • The inclination of smart city researchers to pursue subjective avenues of research in isolation from their peers.
  • The resulting division within the scientific community due to this fragmented approach to knowledge production.
  • The challenge faced by the community in establishing a shared understanding or common ground amidst the diverse knowledge generated by smart city research. [43]

Motivations

Population growth

An important motivation for smart cities is the large projected population growth in the future, with the UN forecasting the global population to reach 9.6 to 13.2 billion by 2100, with cities absorbing 80% of this growth. The surge in population poses daunting challenges for cities, which already grapple with meeting the needs of a growing populace sustainably.[ why?] According to Mora and Deakin, novel approaches to urban sustainability, and leveraging digital technological advancements, are imperative in order to solve major inefficiencies caused by the growth of urban populations. [44]

Tragedy of the commons

An important goal of smart city initiatives is the use of information and communication technologies to address the problem of the tragedy of the commons, a phenomenom which happens when each individual acting in their own self-interest leads to the depletion of a communal resource; for example as in overfishing. As individuals capitalize on public resources for personal gain, these resources diminish, intensifying competition for access to them and overuse. For example, while each individual driver in a city saves time and flexibility by driving, excessive driving causes traffic congestion and environmental issues. This leads to a tragedy of the commons situation which is often worsened by reductions to public transportation services due to the high use of personal vehicles. [45][ clarification needed]

History

Philosophical predecessors of the concept of smart cities can be found in utopian works such as New Atlantis in 1626. [46] Another was, among other utopian works at the time. Ebenezer Howard's concept of Garden Cities in 1898. [43] These were high-density size-limited cities founded in cheap countryside by private collectives, combining the benefits of the city and the country. [47] A number of conceptions like this were created, including by Edward Bellamy, Frank Lloyd Wright, and Le Corbusier, fueled by major problems plaguing Victorian cities. [43] [47] Some critics of smart cities draw parallels between the weaknesses of these early utopian visions and the shortcomings of conceptions of smart cities today. [43]

The concept of smart cities emerged from global cities' recent adoption [30] of information and communications technologies for urban use, which can be used to improve efficiency, sustainability, and livability in urban environments. [31] [32] The term "smart city" was a successor to other, earlier terms like "Wired Cities". [48] Some of the earliest cybernetic interventions in urban planning include the use of computational statistical analysis by the Community Analysis Bureau in Los Angeles in the late 1960', [49] and the establishment by Singapore of the National Computer Board in 1981. [48]

The concept of smart cities has gained increasing popularity over time, but it saw a major surge in adoption around 2005, particularly among technology companies. These companies sought to integrate smart city principles into urban infrastructures and services, creating sophisticated information systems to enhance operational efficiency within urban areas or cities. [50] [51] [52] [53] Smart cities have been criticized as being largely led by this corporate sector, rather than the visions of architects and planners. [43]

Recently, a global movement has emerged advocating the adoption of technological solutions and an approach based on smart cities approach towards urban sustainability.[ citation needed] This movement is associated with a burgeoning technology market projected to experience exponential growth. [54] [55] [56] The three largest sources of spending associated with smart cities as of 2022 are fixed visual surveillance, advanced public transit, and smart outdoor lighting. [54]

Timeline

IBM launched its “Smarter Cities” marketing initiative in 2008, [57] called Smarter Planet, which included the IBM Smarter Cities Challenge. In 2010, Cisco Systems, with $25 million from the Clinton Foundation, established its Connected Urban Development program in partnership with San Francisco, Amsterdam, and Seoul. In 2011, a Smart City Expo World Congress was held in Barcelona, in which 6000 people from 50 countries attended. The European Commission in 2012 established the Smart Cities Marketplace, a centralized hub for urban initiatives in the European Union. [58] The 2015 Chancellor’s Budget for the United Kingdom proposed to invest £140 million in the development of smart cities and the Internet of Things (IoT). [59] Other smart city competitions were launched in the 2010s by Bloomberg Philanthropies, the Rockefeller Foundation, and the United States Department of Transportation (the latter won by Columbus, Ohio). [16] In 2016, AT&T launched an alliance with Cisco, Deloitte, Ericsson, General Electric, IBM, Intel, and Qualcomm, with municipal partners Atlanta, Georgia; Chicago, Illinois; and Dallas, Texas. [16]

Methods

Information and communications technologies

It has been suggested that a smart city (or other community) uses information technologies to:[ citation needed]

  1. Make more efficient use of physical infrastructure (roads, built environment and other physical assets) through artificial intelligence and data analytics in order to support a strong and healthy economic, social, cultural development. [15]
  2. Engage effectively with local governance [60] by use of open innovation processes and e-participation, improving the collective intelligence of the city's institutions through e-governance, [11] with emphasis placed on citizen participation and co-design. [61] [62]
  3. Learn, adapt and innovate and thereby respond more effectively and promptly to changing circumstances by improving the intelligence of the city. [11] [63]

They evolve towards a strong integration of all dimensions of human intelligence, collective intelligence, and also artificial intelligence within the city. [64]: 112–113  [65] According to Mitchell, the intelligence of cities "resides in the increasingly effective combination of digital telecommunication networks (the nerves), ubiquitously embedded intelligence (the brain), sensors and tags (the sensory organs), and software (the knowledge and cognitive competence)". [66]

The physical components of IT systems are crucial to early-stage smart city development. Wired infrastructure is required to support the IoT and wireless technologies central to more interconnected living. [67] A wired city environment provides general access to continually updated digital and physical infrastructure. The latest in telecommunications, robotics, IoT, and various connected technologies can then be deployed to support human capital and productivity. [68] [69]

Forms of intelligence

Bletchley Park is often considered to be the first smart community.

Intelligence in smart cities has been demonstrated in three ways:[ citation needed]

  1. Orchestration intelligence: [11] Cities establish institutions and community-based problem solving and collaborations, such as in Bletchley Park, where the Nazi Enigma cipher was decoded by a team led by Alan Turing. This has been referred to as the first example of a smart city or an intelligent community. [70]
  2. Empowerment intelligence: Cities provide open platforms, experimental facilities and smart city infrastructure in order to cluster innovation in certain districts. These are seen in the Kista Science City in Stockholm and the Cyberport Zone in Hong Kong. Similar facilities have also been established in Melbourne and Kyiv. [71]
  3. Instrumentation intelligence: City infrastructure is made smart through real-time data collection, with analysis and predictive modelling across city districts. There is much controversy surrounding this, particularly with regards to surveillance issues in smart cities.

Examples of instrumentation intelligence are those implemented in Amsterdam. [72] This is realized through: [11]

  1. A common IP infrastructure that is open to researchers to develop applications.
  2. Wireless meters and devices transmit information at the point in time.
  3. A number of homes being provided with smart energy meters to become aware of energy consumption and reduce energy usage.
  4. Solar power garbage compactors, car recharging stations and energy saving lamps.

Energy usage

Smart cities use data and technology to create efficiencies, improve sustainability, create economic development, and enhance quality of life factors for people living and working in the city.[ citation needed] A variety of different datasets may need to be integrated to create a smart energy infrastructure. [73] Employment of smart technologies enables the more efficient application of integrated energy technologies in the city allowing the development of more self-sustaining areas or even positive energy districts that produce more energy than they consume. [74][ how?]

A smart city is powered by "smart connections" for various items such as street lighting, smart buildings, distributed energy resources (DER), data analytics, and smart transportation. Amongst these things, energy is paramount; this is why utility companies play a key role in smart cities. Electric companies, working partnership with city officials, technology companies and a number of other institutions, are among the major players that helped accelerate the growth of America's smart cities. [75]

According to David K. Owens, the former executive vice president of the Edison Electric Institute, two key elements that a smart city must have are an integrated communications platform and a "dynamic resilient grid." [76]

Smart grids are an important technology in smart cities. The improved flexibility of the smart grid permits greater penetration of highly variable renewable energy sources such as solar power and wind power.[ citation needed]

Energy Data Management Systems (EDMS) can help to save cities energy by recording data and using it to increase efficiency. [77]

Data management

For a smart city to function, it is necessary for it to manage an enormous amount of data collected through the embedded devices and systems in its environment. [78] This is also important for the cities growth and security. [79] Smart cities use a variety of data collection, processing, and disseminating technologies, in conjunction with data security and privacy measures, in attempting to encourage innovation and improve citizens' quality of life. [78] This can relate to topics including utilities, health, transportation, entertainment and government services. [78]

Online collaborative sensor data management platforms are on-line database services that allow sensor owners to register and connect their devices to feed data into an on-line database for storage and allow developers to connect to the database and build their own applications based on that data. [80] [81]

Electronic cards (known as smart cards) are another common component in smart city contexts. These cards possess a unique encrypted identifier that allows the owner to log into a range of government provided services (or e-services) without setting up multiple accounts. The single identifier allows governments to aggregate data about citizens and their preferences to improve the provision of services and to determine common interests of groups. This technology has been implemented in Southampton. [38]

Cognitive technologies, such as artificial intelligence and machine learning, can be trained on the data generated by connected city devices to identify patterns. The efficacy and impact of particular policy decisions can be quantified by cognitive systems studying the continuous interactions of humans with their urban surroundings. [82]

Transportation

Bicycle-sharing systems are an important element in smart cities. [83]

Intelligent transportation systems and CCTV systems are also being developed. [84]

Retractable bollards allow to restrict access inside city centers (i.e. to delivery trucks resupplying outlet stores). Opening and closing of such barriers is traditionally done manually, through an electronic pass [85] but can even be done by means of ANPR cameras connected to the bollard system. [86]

Human factors

According to McKinsey, smart city initiatives can have measurable positive impacts on the quality of life of its citizens and visitors. [87] The human framework of a smart city – its economy, knowledge networks, and human support systems – is an important indicator of its success. [88]

For example, arts and culture initiatives are common focus areas in smart city planning. [89] [90] Innovation is associated with intellectual curiosity and creativeness, and various projects have demonstrated that knowledge workers participate in a diverse mix of cultural and artistic activities. [91] [92]

Since mobility is a key area of smart city development, building a capable workforce through education initiatives is necessary. [88][ clarification needed] A city's learning capacity includes its education system, including available workforce training and support, and its cultural development and exchange. [93]

Numerous Smart city programs also focus on soft infrastructure development, like increasing access to voluntary organizations and designated safe zones. [94] This focus on social and relational capital means diversity, inclusion, and ubiquitous access to public services is worked in to city planning. [69]

The development of a knowledge economy is also central to Smart city projects. [95] Smart cities seeking to be hubs of economic activity in emerging tech and service sectors stress the value of innovation in city development. [69]

Other technologies

Mobile devices (such as smartphones and tablets) are a key technology allowing citizens to connect to the smart city services. [96] [97] [98]

Smart cities also rely on smart homes and specifically, the technology used in them. [99] [100] [101] [102] [103]

Digital libraries have also been established in several smart cities. [104] [105] [106] [107] [108] [109]

Additional supporting technology and trends include remote work, [110] [111] [112] telehealth, [113] [114] the blockchain, [115] [116] online banking technology, [117]

A "ubiquitous city", one concept of a smart city, provides access to public services through any connected device. U-city is an extension of the digital city concept because of the facility in terms of accessibility to every infrastructure. [118]

Criticism

The criticisms of smart cities are varied: [15]

  • The high level of big data collection and analytics has raised questions regarding surveillance in smart cities, particularly as it relates to predictive policing and abuse by law enforcement.
  • A bias in strategic interest may lead to ignoring non-ICT centered modes of promising urban development. [119]
  • A smart city, as a scientifically planned city, would defy the fact that real development in cities is often haphazard and participatory. In that line of criticism, the smart city is seen as unattractive for citizens as they "can deaden and stupefy the people who live in its all-efficient embrace". [120]
  • The focus of the concept of smart city may lead to an underestimation of the possible negative effects of the development of the new technological and networked infrastructures needed for a city to be smart. [121]
  • As a globalized business model is based on capital mobility, following a business-oriented model may result in a losing long-term strategy: "The 'spatial fix' inevitably means that mobile capital can often 'write its own deals' to come to town, only to move on when it receives a better deal elsewhere. This is no less true for the smart city than it was for the industrial, [or] manufacturing city." [15]
  • In the smart city environment there are many threats that affect the privacy of individuals. The technology is involved in scanning, identification, checking the current location, including time and direction of movement. Residents may feel that they are constantly monitored and controlled. [122]
  • As of August 2018, the discussion on smart cities centers around the usage and implementation of technology rather than on the inhabitants of the cities and how they can be involved in the process. [123]
  • Especially in low-income countries, smart cities are irrelevant to the urban population which lives in poverty with limited access to basic services. A focus on smart cities may worsen inequality and marginalization. [17]
  • If a smart city strategy is not planned for people with accessibility problems, such as persons with disabilities affecting mobility, vision, hearing, and cognitive function, the implementation of new technologies could create new barriers. [18]
  • Digitalization can have a significant environmental footprint and there is potential for the externalization of environmental costs onto outside communities. [124] [125] [126]
  • Smart city can be used as a slogan only for land revenue generation, especially in the Global South. [127]
  • Urban planning professor Jennifer Clark writes [16] that the 2010s smart city craze in the United States was largely created by companies trying to sell various technologies to municipal customers. She says the technologies actually adopted tended to not be those trying to change physical infrastructure citywide, but those that deliver digital services directly to residents (like ride-hailing services and online food ordering) or which solve a specific problem of municipal government.
  • As has been noted by Fleur Johns, the increasing and evolving use of data has significant implications at multiple levels of governance. [60] Data and infrastructure include digital platforms, algorithms, and the embedding of information technology in the physical infrastructure of smart cities. [60] Digital technology has the potential to be used in negative as well as positive ways, and its use is inherently political. [60] Care needs to be taken to ensure that the development of smart cities does not perpetuate inequalities and exclude marginalized groups in relation to gender, [128] [129] age, [130] [131] race, and other human characteristics. [132]

By country or region

China

China's smart cities movement began with a pilot program launched in 2012 through its Ministry of Housing and Urban-Rural Development. [35]: 58–59  The development of smart cities is addressed in China's National New-Type Urbanization Plan for 2014-2020. [35]: 59–60  It identifies six important aspects for developing smart cities: (1) information network and broadband, (2) digitization of planning management, (3) smart infrastructure, (4) convenience of public services, (5) modernizing industrial development, and (6) sophisticated social governance. [35]: 60 

As of 2016, there were approximately 500 smart city projects in China. [35]: 59  In 2021, China took first in all categories of the International AI City Challenge, demonstrating the national commitment to smart city programs – "by some estimates, China has half of the world’s smart cities". [133] As time goes on the percentage of smart cities in the world will keep increasing, and by 2050, up to 70% of the world's population is expected to inhabit a city. [134]

Commercial companies

Alibaba has created the City Brain. [135] [136] Its first overseas implementation began in 2018 in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia. [137]: 82 

Baidu is working on Apollo, a self-driving technology. [138] Tencent is working on medical technology, [138] such as WeChat Intelligent Healthcare, Tencent Doctorwork, and AI Medical Innovation System (AIMIS). [139]

As of at least 2024, "Safe City" digital products have been increasingly marketed abroad by Chinese companies like Dahua Technology, Huawei, ZTE, and Hikvision. [137]: 80  Huawei has its Safe City Compact Solution which focuses on improving safety in cities. [140] [141] [142] In 2018, the Serbian government announced a Safe City project for Belgrade in conjunction with Huawei, through which a thousand cameras with advanced facial recognition and license plate recognition capabilities would be installed in the city. [137]: 82 

United States

The United States has allocated more than $160 million toward smart city initiatives aimed at leveraging ICT to address challenges within local communities. These challenges include alleviating traffic congestion, fostering economic growth, combating crime and climate change, and enhancing the delivery of public services. This decision aligns with the findings of a trend analysis conducted by the National Intelligence Council (NIC), a think tank focused on long-term strategic planning that reports directly to the President of the United States.[ citation needed]

Canada

According to Mary Anne Moser, since the 1990s, the "smart communities" movement in Canada took shape as a strategy to broaden the base of users involved in IT. [93] Members of these Communities are people that share their interest and work in a partnership with government and other institutional organizations to push the use of IT to improve the quality of daily life as a consequence of different worsening in daily actions. [93] Again Moser explained that "building and planning a smart community seeks for smart growth"; smart growth is essential for the partnership between citizen and institutional organizations to react to worsening trends in daily issues like traffic congestion, school overcrowding and air pollution. [93]

Europe

Members of the EU have been working on smart city developments and ICT initiatives for over a decade. In order to optimize the benefits of digital technologies for both citizens and businesses, the European Union and its 28 member states have initiated the Digital Agenda for Europe. This strategic framework emphasizes the imperative for Europe to harness ICTs to confront numerous global challenges confronting modern society, and to foster the sustainability of urban environments. Within the 2014-15 budget of the Horizon 2020 Research and Innovation program, the European Commission allocated approximately 200 million Euros to expedite advancements in the domain of smart cities and communities, as well as to expand the implementation of ICT solutions for addressing urban sustainability concerns. [143]

Europe's endeavours to adopt an ICT-driven approach toward urban sustainability align with its contributions to the implementation of the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development and the New Urban Agenda, both pivotal policy frameworks outlined by the United Nations (UN). These documents highlight the imperative for transformative actions aimed at fostering inclusivity, safety, resilience, and sustainability on a global scale. Specifically, the New Urban Agenda emphasizes the importance of supporting cities in facilitating smart city development, marking it as a fundamental commitment for the UN's 193 member states. This underscores the significance of addressing urban challenges through the deployment of ICT-related innovations. Such actions are crucial for: (1) fostering environmentally friendly, resource-efficient, safe, inclusive, and accessible urban environments; (2) sustaining economic growth grounded in principles of environmental sustainability and inclusive prosperity; and (3) ensuring equitable access for all to public goods and high-quality services. [144] [145] [146]

The European Union (EU) has devoted constant efforts to devising a strategy for achieving "smart" urban growth for its metropolitan city-regions. [147]: 337–355  [148]

Africa

In Africa, the advancement of smart city development stands as a central component of the national agenda for socioeconomic progress. The 55 member states of the African Union Commission, representing nearly the entire continent, have pledged to utilize ICTs to advance sustainable urban development.[ citation needed]

Southeast Asia

ASEAN Smart Cities Network (ASCN) is a collaborative platform which aims to synergise Smart city development efforts across ASEAN by facilitating cooperation on smart city development, catalysing bankable projects with the private sector, and securing funding and support from ASEAN's external partners.[ citation needed]

India

The Smart Cities Mission is a retrofitting and urban renewal program being spearheaded by the Ministry of Urban Development, Government of India. The Government of India has the ambitious vision of developing 100 cities by modernizing existing mid-sized cities. [149]

Implementation

Dimensions

The characteristics of smart cities can be divided into different dimensions (e.g. economy, environment, mobility) for evaluation in a number of different ways. [20] These can be derived from studies of smart city projects, and can be used as an alternative to difficult-to-define broad definitions in order to clarify what smart cities are. [150] In general, the most common characteristics given for a "smart city" are having a networked infrastructure, which enables political efficiency as well as social and cultural development; an emphasis on business-led urban development; social inclusion of various residents; and an emphasis on the environment. [20] In general terms, smart cities are intended to be efficient, technologically advanced, green, and socially inclusive cities. [23]

According to Camboim et al, cities ought to establish comprehensive plans which address all dimensions of smart cities. [150] This allows them to synchronize the goals of each dimension. According to Marchesani, by taking into account smart city objectives during urban planning, cities can streamline resource allocation and save effort that would otherwise be duplicated. For example, cities can consider smart mobility goals for infrastructure while the infrastructure initiatives are planned. [34]

Partnerships

The effective implementation of smart city initiatives requires active collaboration and involvement from diverse stakeholders, including government agencies, businesses, community organizations, academia, and citizens. Collaborative partnerships enable cities to harness a wide range of expertise, resources, and perspectives to tackle complex challenges and devise innovative solutions. Involving stakeholders in decision-making processes fosters inclusivity, ownership, and a shared vision for the city's future. For instance, engaging citizens in co-creating smart city initiatives ensures that solutions are tailored to meet the community's specific needs and aspirations. Collaborating with businesses and academia brings technical know-how and research capabilities, driving innovation and the adoption of state-of-the-art technologies. [151] [152] [153]

These partnerships also facilitate the exchange of knowledge and insights among stakeholders. By sharing best practices and lessons learned, cities can expedite their smart city development efforts and circumvent potential challenges. Moreover, collaborations with community organizations guarantee that the social dimensions of a smart city, such as equity and inclusivity, are adequately considered in both planning and implementation phases. [34]

See also

References

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Further reading

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

Possible scenario of smart and sustainable mobility

A smart city is a technologically modern urban area that uses different types of electronic methods and sensors to collect specific data. Information gained from that data is used to manage assets, resources and services efficiently; in return, that data is used to improve operations across the city. [1] This includes data collected from citizens, devices, buildings and assets that is processed and analyzed to monitor and manage traffic and transportation systems, [2] power plants, utilities, urban forestry, [3] water supply networks, waste disposal, criminal investigations, information systems, schools, libraries, hospitals, and other community services. [4] [5] Smart cities are defined to be smart both in the ways in which their local governments harness technology as well as in how they monitor, analyze, plan, and govern the city. In smart cities, the sharing of data is not limited to the city itself but also includes businesses, citizens and other third parties that can benefit from various uses of that data. Sharing data from different systems and sectors creates opportunities for increased understanding and economic benefits. [6] [7]

The smart city concept integrates information and communication technology (ICT), and various physical devices connected to the Internet of things (IOT) network to optimize the efficiency of city operations and services and connect to citizens. [8] [9] Smart city technology allows city officials to interact directly with both community and city infrastructure and to monitor what is happening in the city and how the city is evolving. ICT is used to enhance quality, performance and interactivity of urban services, to reduce costs and resource consumption and to increase contact between citizens and government. [10] Smart city applications are developed to manage urban flows and allow for real-time responses. [11] A smart city may therefore be more prepared to respond to challenges than one with a conventional "transactional" relationship with its citizens. [12] [13] Yet, the term itself remains unclear in its specifics and therefore, open to many interpretations. [14] Many cities have already adopted some sort of smart city technology.

Smart city initiatives have been criticized as largely driven by unreliable corporations, [15] [16] poorly adapted to residents' needs, [17] [18] as largely unsuccessful,[ citation needed] and as a dangerous move toward totalitarian surveillance. [19]

Background

Throughout history, cities have served as hubs of innovation, yet the digital age has introduced fresh opportunities and hurdles for urban progress. Consequently, cities are undergoing a transition into "smart cities" to foster the creation of urban environments that are more efficient, sustainable, and livable. [20] [21] [22] [23][ how?] Importantly, this transformation extends beyond the urban domain and holds considerable social, cultural, and economic significance. It requires a fundamental overhaul of both internal and external city management and operations, prompting a rethinking of urban governance, citizen involvement, and the delivery of public services. [24]

The smart city approach underscores the importance of collaboration among diverse stakeholders, including government, businesses, and citizens, to co-create innovative solutions and address intricate urban challenges. By embracing this concept, cities aim to not only upgrade their infrastructure and service provision but also to nurture social inclusion, technological adoption, and economic advancement. Leveraging digital technologies facilitates the enhancement of residents' quality of life, the promotion of sustainability, and the stimulation of economic growth by fostering the emergence of new industries and job opportunities. [24] [25] [26] [23]

The transition to a smart city entails internal changes in urban planning, management, and operation, with digital implementation serving as a driving force and objective. [27] Specifically within smart city trajectories, there is a heightened emphasis on utilizing data to inform decision-making processes. For instance, smart city technologies enable the monitoring of traffic flow, energy consumption, air quality, and various other parameters. [28] [29] Subsequently, this data can be analyzed to pinpoint areas for enhancement and optimize urban services. Moreover, smart city technologies facilitate improved communication and collaboration among different departments and stakeholders.

Information and communication technologies

The concept of smart cities emerged from global cities' recent adoption [30] of information and communications technologies for urban use, which can be used to improve efficiency, sustainability, and livability in urban environments. [31] [32] This usage is a central tenet of the smart city concept.[ citation needed] Some examples include the use of sensors, data analytics techniques, and mobile applications to oversee and regulate urban systems, such as systems of transportation, energy, and waste management. According to the concept, the real-time data generated thereby then empowers cities to make better-informed decisions and refine the services they offer. [33] [34]

However, the integration of ICTs into cities also presents challenges. These financial limitations in implementation, technical obstacles, and concerns relating to privacy and security. ICTs are also not always uniformly accessible across communities, contributing to the digital divide in which certain groups are marginalized with respect to their access to technology. [34]

Definition

While the term has gained widespread popularity, the concept of a "smart city" is amorphous and there is no shared understanding or commonly accepted definition of what the term encompasses. [20] [35]: 71  This presents a paradox, as measuring the impact and outcomes of a concept without a clear definition proves challenging. The absence of a universally accepted definition of a smart city poses a significant challenge for policymakers, planners, and researchers. Without a clear understanding of its parameters, evaluating the effectiveness and impact of smart city initiatives becomes difficult. It also hampers the ability to compare and derive insights from various smart city projects and identify best practices. [36] [37] [27]

Deakin and Al Waer list four factors that contribute to the definition of a smart city: [38]

  1. The application of a wide range of electronic and digital technologies to communities and cities.
  2. The use of ICT to transform life and working environments within the region.
  3. The embedding of such Information and Communications Technologies in government systems.
  4. The territorialisation of practices that brings ICT and people together to enhance the innovation and knowledge that they offer.

Deakin defines the smart city as one that utilizes ICT to meet the demands of the market (the citizens of the city), and states that community involvement in the process is necessary for a smart city. [39] A smart city would thus be a city that not only possesses ICT technology in particular areas, but has also implemented this technology in a manner that positively impacts the local community.

Early definitions

Early examples of smart city definitions include:

  • Caragliu et al. (2011): “A city is smart when investments in human and social capital and traditional (transport) and modern (ICT) communication infrastructure fuel sustainable economic growth and a high quality of life, with a wise management of natural resources, through participatory governance.” [40]
  • Bakici, Almirall, & Wareham (2013): “Smart city as a high-tech intensive and advanced city that connects people, information, and city elements using new technologies in order to create a sustainable, greener city, competitive and innovative commerce, and an increased life quality.” [41]
  • Nam and Pardo (2011): “A smart city infuses information into its physical infrastructure to improve conveniences, facilitate mobility, add efficiencies, conserve energy, improve the quality of air and water, identify problems and fix them quickly, recover rapidly from disasters, collect data to make better decisions, deploy resources effectively, and share data to enable collaboration across entities and domains.” [42]

These definitions underscore the significance of employing technology and data to enhance urban services and foster sustainable, liveable environments. They also stress the importance of citizen involvement and cross-sector collaboration. However, alongside these shared principles, there are notable disparities among the suggested definitions. For instance, while some definitions concentrate more on the economic advantages of smart city endeavours, others prioritize environmental or social benefits. Additionally, certain definitions give precedence to specific technologies or sectors over others. [24]

Research

The process of defining and conceptualizing smart city development is ongoing, resulting in a division within smart city research. Researchers are actively seeking interpretations that can unify and overcome the fragmentation created by the initial two decades of knowledge production in this field. The main issues surrounding early smart city debate the research include the following: [43]

  • The absence of intellectual exchange among researchers in the smart city development domain, which is crucial for advancing ICT-driven urban sustainability initiatives.
  • The inclination of smart city researchers to pursue subjective avenues of research in isolation from their peers.
  • The resulting division within the scientific community due to this fragmented approach to knowledge production.
  • The challenge faced by the community in establishing a shared understanding or common ground amidst the diverse knowledge generated by smart city research. [43]

Motivations

Population growth

An important motivation for smart cities is the large projected population growth in the future, with the UN forecasting the global population to reach 9.6 to 13.2 billion by 2100, with cities absorbing 80% of this growth. The surge in population poses daunting challenges for cities, which already grapple with meeting the needs of a growing populace sustainably.[ why?] According to Mora and Deakin, novel approaches to urban sustainability, and leveraging digital technological advancements, are imperative in order to solve major inefficiencies caused by the growth of urban populations. [44]

Tragedy of the commons

An important goal of smart city initiatives is the use of information and communication technologies to address the problem of the tragedy of the commons, a phenomenom which happens when each individual acting in their own self-interest leads to the depletion of a communal resource; for example as in overfishing. As individuals capitalize on public resources for personal gain, these resources diminish, intensifying competition for access to them and overuse. For example, while each individual driver in a city saves time and flexibility by driving, excessive driving causes traffic congestion and environmental issues. This leads to a tragedy of the commons situation which is often worsened by reductions to public transportation services due to the high use of personal vehicles. [45][ clarification needed]

History

Philosophical predecessors of the concept of smart cities can be found in utopian works such as New Atlantis in 1626. [46] Another was, among other utopian works at the time. Ebenezer Howard's concept of Garden Cities in 1898. [43] These were high-density size-limited cities founded in cheap countryside by private collectives, combining the benefits of the city and the country. [47] A number of conceptions like this were created, including by Edward Bellamy, Frank Lloyd Wright, and Le Corbusier, fueled by major problems plaguing Victorian cities. [43] [47] Some critics of smart cities draw parallels between the weaknesses of these early utopian visions and the shortcomings of conceptions of smart cities today. [43]

The concept of smart cities emerged from global cities' recent adoption [30] of information and communications technologies for urban use, which can be used to improve efficiency, sustainability, and livability in urban environments. [31] [32] The term "smart city" was a successor to other, earlier terms like "Wired Cities". [48] Some of the earliest cybernetic interventions in urban planning include the use of computational statistical analysis by the Community Analysis Bureau in Los Angeles in the late 1960', [49] and the establishment by Singapore of the National Computer Board in 1981. [48]

The concept of smart cities has gained increasing popularity over time, but it saw a major surge in adoption around 2005, particularly among technology companies. These companies sought to integrate smart city principles into urban infrastructures and services, creating sophisticated information systems to enhance operational efficiency within urban areas or cities. [50] [51] [52] [53] Smart cities have been criticized as being largely led by this corporate sector, rather than the visions of architects and planners. [43]

Recently, a global movement has emerged advocating the adoption of technological solutions and an approach based on smart cities approach towards urban sustainability.[ citation needed] This movement is associated with a burgeoning technology market projected to experience exponential growth. [54] [55] [56] The three largest sources of spending associated with smart cities as of 2022 are fixed visual surveillance, advanced public transit, and smart outdoor lighting. [54]

Timeline

IBM launched its “Smarter Cities” marketing initiative in 2008, [57] called Smarter Planet, which included the IBM Smarter Cities Challenge. In 2010, Cisco Systems, with $25 million from the Clinton Foundation, established its Connected Urban Development program in partnership with San Francisco, Amsterdam, and Seoul. In 2011, a Smart City Expo World Congress was held in Barcelona, in which 6000 people from 50 countries attended. The European Commission in 2012 established the Smart Cities Marketplace, a centralized hub for urban initiatives in the European Union. [58] The 2015 Chancellor’s Budget for the United Kingdom proposed to invest £140 million in the development of smart cities and the Internet of Things (IoT). [59] Other smart city competitions were launched in the 2010s by Bloomberg Philanthropies, the Rockefeller Foundation, and the United States Department of Transportation (the latter won by Columbus, Ohio). [16] In 2016, AT&T launched an alliance with Cisco, Deloitte, Ericsson, General Electric, IBM, Intel, and Qualcomm, with municipal partners Atlanta, Georgia; Chicago, Illinois; and Dallas, Texas. [16]

Methods

Information and communications technologies

It has been suggested that a smart city (or other community) uses information technologies to:[ citation needed]

  1. Make more efficient use of physical infrastructure (roads, built environment and other physical assets) through artificial intelligence and data analytics in order to support a strong and healthy economic, social, cultural development. [15]
  2. Engage effectively with local governance [60] by use of open innovation processes and e-participation, improving the collective intelligence of the city's institutions through e-governance, [11] with emphasis placed on citizen participation and co-design. [61] [62]
  3. Learn, adapt and innovate and thereby respond more effectively and promptly to changing circumstances by improving the intelligence of the city. [11] [63]

They evolve towards a strong integration of all dimensions of human intelligence, collective intelligence, and also artificial intelligence within the city. [64]: 112–113  [65] According to Mitchell, the intelligence of cities "resides in the increasingly effective combination of digital telecommunication networks (the nerves), ubiquitously embedded intelligence (the brain), sensors and tags (the sensory organs), and software (the knowledge and cognitive competence)". [66]

The physical components of IT systems are crucial to early-stage smart city development. Wired infrastructure is required to support the IoT and wireless technologies central to more interconnected living. [67] A wired city environment provides general access to continually updated digital and physical infrastructure. The latest in telecommunications, robotics, IoT, and various connected technologies can then be deployed to support human capital and productivity. [68] [69]

Forms of intelligence

Bletchley Park is often considered to be the first smart community.

Intelligence in smart cities has been demonstrated in three ways:[ citation needed]

  1. Orchestration intelligence: [11] Cities establish institutions and community-based problem solving and collaborations, such as in Bletchley Park, where the Nazi Enigma cipher was decoded by a team led by Alan Turing. This has been referred to as the first example of a smart city or an intelligent community. [70]
  2. Empowerment intelligence: Cities provide open platforms, experimental facilities and smart city infrastructure in order to cluster innovation in certain districts. These are seen in the Kista Science City in Stockholm and the Cyberport Zone in Hong Kong. Similar facilities have also been established in Melbourne and Kyiv. [71]
  3. Instrumentation intelligence: City infrastructure is made smart through real-time data collection, with analysis and predictive modelling across city districts. There is much controversy surrounding this, particularly with regards to surveillance issues in smart cities.

Examples of instrumentation intelligence are those implemented in Amsterdam. [72] This is realized through: [11]

  1. A common IP infrastructure that is open to researchers to develop applications.
  2. Wireless meters and devices transmit information at the point in time.
  3. A number of homes being provided with smart energy meters to become aware of energy consumption and reduce energy usage.
  4. Solar power garbage compactors, car recharging stations and energy saving lamps.

Energy usage

Smart cities use data and technology to create efficiencies, improve sustainability, create economic development, and enhance quality of life factors for people living and working in the city.[ citation needed] A variety of different datasets may need to be integrated to create a smart energy infrastructure. [73] Employment of smart technologies enables the more efficient application of integrated energy technologies in the city allowing the development of more self-sustaining areas or even positive energy districts that produce more energy than they consume. [74][ how?]

A smart city is powered by "smart connections" for various items such as street lighting, smart buildings, distributed energy resources (DER), data analytics, and smart transportation. Amongst these things, energy is paramount; this is why utility companies play a key role in smart cities. Electric companies, working partnership with city officials, technology companies and a number of other institutions, are among the major players that helped accelerate the growth of America's smart cities. [75]

According to David K. Owens, the former executive vice president of the Edison Electric Institute, two key elements that a smart city must have are an integrated communications platform and a "dynamic resilient grid." [76]

Smart grids are an important technology in smart cities. The improved flexibility of the smart grid permits greater penetration of highly variable renewable energy sources such as solar power and wind power.[ citation needed]

Energy Data Management Systems (EDMS) can help to save cities energy by recording data and using it to increase efficiency. [77]

Data management

For a smart city to function, it is necessary for it to manage an enormous amount of data collected through the embedded devices and systems in its environment. [78] This is also important for the cities growth and security. [79] Smart cities use a variety of data collection, processing, and disseminating technologies, in conjunction with data security and privacy measures, in attempting to encourage innovation and improve citizens' quality of life. [78] This can relate to topics including utilities, health, transportation, entertainment and government services. [78]

Online collaborative sensor data management platforms are on-line database services that allow sensor owners to register and connect their devices to feed data into an on-line database for storage and allow developers to connect to the database and build their own applications based on that data. [80] [81]

Electronic cards (known as smart cards) are another common component in smart city contexts. These cards possess a unique encrypted identifier that allows the owner to log into a range of government provided services (or e-services) without setting up multiple accounts. The single identifier allows governments to aggregate data about citizens and their preferences to improve the provision of services and to determine common interests of groups. This technology has been implemented in Southampton. [38]

Cognitive technologies, such as artificial intelligence and machine learning, can be trained on the data generated by connected city devices to identify patterns. The efficacy and impact of particular policy decisions can be quantified by cognitive systems studying the continuous interactions of humans with their urban surroundings. [82]

Transportation

Bicycle-sharing systems are an important element in smart cities. [83]

Intelligent transportation systems and CCTV systems are also being developed. [84]

Retractable bollards allow to restrict access inside city centers (i.e. to delivery trucks resupplying outlet stores). Opening and closing of such barriers is traditionally done manually, through an electronic pass [85] but can even be done by means of ANPR cameras connected to the bollard system. [86]

Human factors

According to McKinsey, smart city initiatives can have measurable positive impacts on the quality of life of its citizens and visitors. [87] The human framework of a smart city – its economy, knowledge networks, and human support systems – is an important indicator of its success. [88]

For example, arts and culture initiatives are common focus areas in smart city planning. [89] [90] Innovation is associated with intellectual curiosity and creativeness, and various projects have demonstrated that knowledge workers participate in a diverse mix of cultural and artistic activities. [91] [92]

Since mobility is a key area of smart city development, building a capable workforce through education initiatives is necessary. [88][ clarification needed] A city's learning capacity includes its education system, including available workforce training and support, and its cultural development and exchange. [93]

Numerous Smart city programs also focus on soft infrastructure development, like increasing access to voluntary organizations and designated safe zones. [94] This focus on social and relational capital means diversity, inclusion, and ubiquitous access to public services is worked in to city planning. [69]

The development of a knowledge economy is also central to Smart city projects. [95] Smart cities seeking to be hubs of economic activity in emerging tech and service sectors stress the value of innovation in city development. [69]

Other technologies

Mobile devices (such as smartphones and tablets) are a key technology allowing citizens to connect to the smart city services. [96] [97] [98]

Smart cities also rely on smart homes and specifically, the technology used in them. [99] [100] [101] [102] [103]

Digital libraries have also been established in several smart cities. [104] [105] [106] [107] [108] [109]

Additional supporting technology and trends include remote work, [110] [111] [112] telehealth, [113] [114] the blockchain, [115] [116] online banking technology, [117]

A "ubiquitous city", one concept of a smart city, provides access to public services through any connected device. U-city is an extension of the digital city concept because of the facility in terms of accessibility to every infrastructure. [118]

Criticism

The criticisms of smart cities are varied: [15]

  • The high level of big data collection and analytics has raised questions regarding surveillance in smart cities, particularly as it relates to predictive policing and abuse by law enforcement.
  • A bias in strategic interest may lead to ignoring non-ICT centered modes of promising urban development. [119]
  • A smart city, as a scientifically planned city, would defy the fact that real development in cities is often haphazard and participatory. In that line of criticism, the smart city is seen as unattractive for citizens as they "can deaden and stupefy the people who live in its all-efficient embrace". [120]
  • The focus of the concept of smart city may lead to an underestimation of the possible negative effects of the development of the new technological and networked infrastructures needed for a city to be smart. [121]
  • As a globalized business model is based on capital mobility, following a business-oriented model may result in a losing long-term strategy: "The 'spatial fix' inevitably means that mobile capital can often 'write its own deals' to come to town, only to move on when it receives a better deal elsewhere. This is no less true for the smart city than it was for the industrial, [or] manufacturing city." [15]
  • In the smart city environment there are many threats that affect the privacy of individuals. The technology is involved in scanning, identification, checking the current location, including time and direction of movement. Residents may feel that they are constantly monitored and controlled. [122]
  • As of August 2018, the discussion on smart cities centers around the usage and implementation of technology rather than on the inhabitants of the cities and how they can be involved in the process. [123]
  • Especially in low-income countries, smart cities are irrelevant to the urban population which lives in poverty with limited access to basic services. A focus on smart cities may worsen inequality and marginalization. [17]
  • If a smart city strategy is not planned for people with accessibility problems, such as persons with disabilities affecting mobility, vision, hearing, and cognitive function, the implementation of new technologies could create new barriers. [18]
  • Digitalization can have a significant environmental footprint and there is potential for the externalization of environmental costs onto outside communities. [124] [125] [126]
  • Smart city can be used as a slogan only for land revenue generation, especially in the Global South. [127]
  • Urban planning professor Jennifer Clark writes [16] that the 2010s smart city craze in the United States was largely created by companies trying to sell various technologies to municipal customers. She says the technologies actually adopted tended to not be those trying to change physical infrastructure citywide, but those that deliver digital services directly to residents (like ride-hailing services and online food ordering) or which solve a specific problem of municipal government.
  • As has been noted by Fleur Johns, the increasing and evolving use of data has significant implications at multiple levels of governance. [60] Data and infrastructure include digital platforms, algorithms, and the embedding of information technology in the physical infrastructure of smart cities. [60] Digital technology has the potential to be used in negative as well as positive ways, and its use is inherently political. [60] Care needs to be taken to ensure that the development of smart cities does not perpetuate inequalities and exclude marginalized groups in relation to gender, [128] [129] age, [130] [131] race, and other human characteristics. [132]

By country or region

China

China's smart cities movement began with a pilot program launched in 2012 through its Ministry of Housing and Urban-Rural Development. [35]: 58–59  The development of smart cities is addressed in China's National New-Type Urbanization Plan for 2014-2020. [35]: 59–60  It identifies six important aspects for developing smart cities: (1) information network and broadband, (2) digitization of planning management, (3) smart infrastructure, (4) convenience of public services, (5) modernizing industrial development, and (6) sophisticated social governance. [35]: 60 

As of 2016, there were approximately 500 smart city projects in China. [35]: 59  In 2021, China took first in all categories of the International AI City Challenge, demonstrating the national commitment to smart city programs – "by some estimates, China has half of the world’s smart cities". [133] As time goes on the percentage of smart cities in the world will keep increasing, and by 2050, up to 70% of the world's population is expected to inhabit a city. [134]

Commercial companies

Alibaba has created the City Brain. [135] [136] Its first overseas implementation began in 2018 in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia. [137]: 82 

Baidu is working on Apollo, a self-driving technology. [138] Tencent is working on medical technology, [138] such as WeChat Intelligent Healthcare, Tencent Doctorwork, and AI Medical Innovation System (AIMIS). [139]

As of at least 2024, "Safe City" digital products have been increasingly marketed abroad by Chinese companies like Dahua Technology, Huawei, ZTE, and Hikvision. [137]: 80  Huawei has its Safe City Compact Solution which focuses on improving safety in cities. [140] [141] [142] In 2018, the Serbian government announced a Safe City project for Belgrade in conjunction with Huawei, through which a thousand cameras with advanced facial recognition and license plate recognition capabilities would be installed in the city. [137]: 82 

United States

The United States has allocated more than $160 million toward smart city initiatives aimed at leveraging ICT to address challenges within local communities. These challenges include alleviating traffic congestion, fostering economic growth, combating crime and climate change, and enhancing the delivery of public services. This decision aligns with the findings of a trend analysis conducted by the National Intelligence Council (NIC), a think tank focused on long-term strategic planning that reports directly to the President of the United States.[ citation needed]

Canada

According to Mary Anne Moser, since the 1990s, the "smart communities" movement in Canada took shape as a strategy to broaden the base of users involved in IT. [93] Members of these Communities are people that share their interest and work in a partnership with government and other institutional organizations to push the use of IT to improve the quality of daily life as a consequence of different worsening in daily actions. [93] Again Moser explained that "building and planning a smart community seeks for smart growth"; smart growth is essential for the partnership between citizen and institutional organizations to react to worsening trends in daily issues like traffic congestion, school overcrowding and air pollution. [93]

Europe

Members of the EU have been working on smart city developments and ICT initiatives for over a decade. In order to optimize the benefits of digital technologies for both citizens and businesses, the European Union and its 28 member states have initiated the Digital Agenda for Europe. This strategic framework emphasizes the imperative for Europe to harness ICTs to confront numerous global challenges confronting modern society, and to foster the sustainability of urban environments. Within the 2014-15 budget of the Horizon 2020 Research and Innovation program, the European Commission allocated approximately 200 million Euros to expedite advancements in the domain of smart cities and communities, as well as to expand the implementation of ICT solutions for addressing urban sustainability concerns. [143]

Europe's endeavours to adopt an ICT-driven approach toward urban sustainability align with its contributions to the implementation of the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development and the New Urban Agenda, both pivotal policy frameworks outlined by the United Nations (UN). These documents highlight the imperative for transformative actions aimed at fostering inclusivity, safety, resilience, and sustainability on a global scale. Specifically, the New Urban Agenda emphasizes the importance of supporting cities in facilitating smart city development, marking it as a fundamental commitment for the UN's 193 member states. This underscores the significance of addressing urban challenges through the deployment of ICT-related innovations. Such actions are crucial for: (1) fostering environmentally friendly, resource-efficient, safe, inclusive, and accessible urban environments; (2) sustaining economic growth grounded in principles of environmental sustainability and inclusive prosperity; and (3) ensuring equitable access for all to public goods and high-quality services. [144] [145] [146]

The European Union (EU) has devoted constant efforts to devising a strategy for achieving "smart" urban growth for its metropolitan city-regions. [147]: 337–355  [148]

Africa

In Africa, the advancement of smart city development stands as a central component of the national agenda for socioeconomic progress. The 55 member states of the African Union Commission, representing nearly the entire continent, have pledged to utilize ICTs to advance sustainable urban development.[ citation needed]

Southeast Asia

ASEAN Smart Cities Network (ASCN) is a collaborative platform which aims to synergise Smart city development efforts across ASEAN by facilitating cooperation on smart city development, catalysing bankable projects with the private sector, and securing funding and support from ASEAN's external partners.[ citation needed]

India

The Smart Cities Mission is a retrofitting and urban renewal program being spearheaded by the Ministry of Urban Development, Government of India. The Government of India has the ambitious vision of developing 100 cities by modernizing existing mid-sized cities. [149]

Implementation

Dimensions

The characteristics of smart cities can be divided into different dimensions (e.g. economy, environment, mobility) for evaluation in a number of different ways. [20] These can be derived from studies of smart city projects, and can be used as an alternative to difficult-to-define broad definitions in order to clarify what smart cities are. [150] In general, the most common characteristics given for a "smart city" are having a networked infrastructure, which enables political efficiency as well as social and cultural development; an emphasis on business-led urban development; social inclusion of various residents; and an emphasis on the environment. [20] In general terms, smart cities are intended to be efficient, technologically advanced, green, and socially inclusive cities. [23]

According to Camboim et al, cities ought to establish comprehensive plans which address all dimensions of smart cities. [150] This allows them to synchronize the goals of each dimension. According to Marchesani, by taking into account smart city objectives during urban planning, cities can streamline resource allocation and save effort that would otherwise be duplicated. For example, cities can consider smart mobility goals for infrastructure while the infrastructure initiatives are planned. [34]

Partnerships

The effective implementation of smart city initiatives requires active collaboration and involvement from diverse stakeholders, including government agencies, businesses, community organizations, academia, and citizens. Collaborative partnerships enable cities to harness a wide range of expertise, resources, and perspectives to tackle complex challenges and devise innovative solutions. Involving stakeholders in decision-making processes fosters inclusivity, ownership, and a shared vision for the city's future. For instance, engaging citizens in co-creating smart city initiatives ensures that solutions are tailored to meet the community's specific needs and aspirations. Collaborating with businesses and academia brings technical know-how and research capabilities, driving innovation and the adoption of state-of-the-art technologies. [151] [152] [153]

These partnerships also facilitate the exchange of knowledge and insights among stakeholders. By sharing best practices and lessons learned, cities can expedite their smart city development efforts and circumvent potential challenges. Moreover, collaborations with community organizations guarantee that the social dimensions of a smart city, such as equity and inclusivity, are adequately considered in both planning and implementation phases. [34]

See also

References

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