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.
The predictions address what the analysts believe will "most heavily influence the direction and magnitude" of technology investment, management and evaluation.
So without further ado, here are the top 10:
1. In 2013, 70% of worldwide investment in smart city projects will concentrate on energy, transportation and public safety, with 90% of them at least partially funded by national or international governments.
2. At least 50% of new smart city programs will be implemented at the line-of-business or city-function level.
3. Worldwide spending on smart water solutions will hit $1.8 billion.
4. Smart city information challenges will begin to be seen as big data issues.
5. Local government will continue in the research and evaluation stage of machine-to-machine with growth in particular city functions primarily for medium-size to large cities.
6. Cities with open data initiatives will drive 50% more private, citizen and crowdsourced mobile applications.
7. Local governments will reach out to citizens through mobile devices and social media, which will accelerate a new kind of citizen/government partnership.
8. Local government will try out new public/private, risk and reward sharing partnership models to enhance sustainable funding.
9. At least three more tier 1 global ICT vendors will come into the market with branded smart city solutions, which will bring about more competition existing vendors.
10. At least 70% of the smart city programs that succeed between 2013 and 2015 will be run by joint ventures that include city leaders as key stewards.
"This worldwide set of smart city predictions is a list of prioritized business drivers and technology trends that we believe will shape the local government IT landscape in the context of an economically and socially challenging 2013 time. Our goal is to emphasize the events that are reshaping the ways cities operate and require the city leaders to make smart, and sometimes very difficult, decisions," said Ruthbea Yesner Clarke, research director of smart cities strategies for IDC Government Insights.