Sixteen Shades of Smart - Preview

22 Sixteen shades of smart

security and corruption to mobility and inclusiveness, from governance and health to the environment, education and culture. They can be classified in six categories: basic needs, opportunities, governance, built environment, health and culture, and future needs. Figure 1 presents the range of challenges faced by the cities studied.

Figure 1: Priority areas of the cities studied

Basic amenities (water, waste, recycling)

Basic needs




School education Social mobility / inclusiveness

Corruption / transparency



Urban planning Road congestion Public transport

Built Environment

Air pollution

Health & Culture

Culture (museum) Environment (green space, cleanliness)

University education Fulfilling employment

Future needs

We studied 16 cities, from East and South Asia, the Middle East, Europe, and North and South America (see Figure 2 ). 3 In addition to the wide geographical range, the cities studied differ also in population size. Table 1 presents each city’s estimated population for 2019. According to these figures, the largest city studied is Buenos Aires with 15.2 million people and the smallest is Ramallah with 57,000. Size provides important insights about the approach taken to making the lives of their citizens “better.” The wide

3  For this initial study, the choice was made to have a limited number of cities, which led to difficult decisions about how represen- tative the sample identified could be in all the dimensions studied. The absence of African cities is conspicuous, and further work on city cases will address this limitation.

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