In the recently released Network Society City Index 2016, Ericsson has named Stockholm as the leading smart city in the world. Stockholm is followed by other cities such as London, Copenhagen, Singapore, and Paris.
Stockholm scored high in the sustainable urban development parameter of the index. London ranked top in the ICT part of the index. There are many cities that have improved in urban development and moved up on the chart compared to the previous year. Barcelona, Istanbul, and Jakarta are the three that has shown considerable improvement. Meanwhile, places such as Hong Kong, Moscow and Dubai dropped in the ranking.
The Network Society City Index 2016 measures the performance of 41 cities in sustainable urban development and ICT maturity. The report also provided few highlights stating that there exists a positive correlation between the social and economic development and increasing ICT maturity. According to the report, the ICT maturity can ‘decouple’ the socioeconomic progress from an increased environmental footprint in favor of more sustainable development.
In order to fulfill the goals of United Nations Sustainable Development Goals, proper smart city planning, and implementation is a must. Such cities will be instrumental in the advancement of climate action, poverty reduction, better health, and education, as well as improved social and financial inclusion, pointed out the Index report.
“UN-Habitat estimates that 70 percent of the world’s population will reside in urban areas by 2050. Many smart city initiatives to date have mainly used ICT to optimize existing systems and behaviors, for example, intelligent transport,” said Erik Kruse, Head of Ericsson Networked Society Lab.
“Instead, cities need to rethink existing structures to fully grasp the potential of ICT to make sure that “smart” is, in fact, sustainable. The future Networked Society city is characterized by resiliency, collaboration, participation and mobility, which are essential for ensuring our cities are attractive, sustainable and vibrant places,” he said.
A regulatory environment that supports ICT adoption, holistic approach towards integrating ICT across various social sectors, etc. are essential for the cities to come up with smart city initiatives, concluded the report.