The city of Boston, the Commonwealth of Massachusetts and Boston University are working with IBM to find new, smarter solutions to persistent urban challenges, including traffic congestion and streetlight management, energy efficiency, major event coordination, and water/sewer and airport management and maintenance.
Cities from Amsterdam and Stockholm to San Diego and Nanjing are reaching for the brass ring of sustainable, efficient and pleasant smart cities. But Santander, an old port city on Spain's Atlantic coast with the same financial problems nagging at many European cities, has already made it happen.
Smart cities are the "biggest market for IT in the world," according to Joe Dignan, chief European public sector analyst for tech research and analysis firm Ovum. And he has a lot more to say about smart city initiatives and why the smart cities market is so strong at a time when so many others are not.
Residents of Nice, France are remotely accessing city services confidentially and well beyond normal city hall operating hours – all from a popular shopping mall.
Frustrated drivers circling in search of an elusive parking spot not only contribute to traffic congestion, they also add to air pollution levels. The fix? No worries, there's an app for it.
To be the best big city is London Mayor Boris Johnson's ambition and he's tapped experts to develop a Smart London vision that puts technological innovation at the heart of making the capital a better place to live, work and invest.
Pike Research is forecasting that the number of people living in cities will almost double – from 3.6 billion to 6.3 billion by 2050 – and the research firm expects that phenomenal growth will lead to similar growth in smart city initiatives, as well as a smart cities technology market expected to top $20 billion in annual value by 2020.
The smart city initiative is growing as a recognized movement for innovation and investment at all levels of government, according to IDC Government Insights. For that reason, a smart city analyst team from IDC Government Insights has put together the company's first annual top 10 predictions for the smart city market in 2013.