Smart Cities

What is a smart city? A smart city is a city that uses insights from information and communication technologies (ICT) to increase operational efficiency, improve the quality of government services, and manage data assets, resources, and services efficiently. Data collected is used for transportation systems, utilities, power plants, waste management, and crime detection. Smart city technology allows cities to reduce both costs and resource consumption.

Smart cities need to collect reliable sensor data in order to be successful and do so through various means. Smart cities use the Internet of Things (IoT), consisting of sensors, devices, and applications that enable cities to collect data from specific areas to process for implementation. IoT sensors include water quality sensors, image sensors, gas sensors, proximity sensors, motion detector sensors, level sensors, and temperature sensors. An example of these sensors at work is sensors in a parking garage or along streets that can connect to an app to show where available parking spots are available. This reduces traffic congestion and prevents frustration or tardiness.

The value of a smart city is not necessarily dependent on how much information they have, but what they do with it. Success also depends on its ability to form a strong relationship between the private sector and the government.

Smart cities and the technology they use will become increasingly important into the future. By 2020, the smart cities are expected to be a $400 billion industry. Today, approximately 55% of the world’s people live in urban areas, a number expected to rise to 68% by the year 2050, according to the United Nations. With the growing urban population around the world, smart cities and their technology allow governments to monitor and improve the financial, social and environmental aspects of life for its residents and visitors, making life more enjoyable, efficient, and sustainable. Public and private companies and federal, state, and city governments are working together to make smart cities possible.

Smart cities started in Europe with early adopters being Barcelona and Amsterdam. Following suit shortly after were Hamburg, Copenhagen, Nice, Dubai, and Singapore. In the United States, San Francisco, Atlanta, New York City, Miami, Denver, Boston, Columbus, Chicago, and Kansas City were among the first US smart cities.

The IESE Business School's Center for Globalization and Strategy look at 174 cities around the world and analyzed them across nine metrics: human capital, social cohesion, economy, environment, governance, urban planning, international, outreach technology, and mobility. According to the IESE Cities in Motion Index, the ten smartest cities in the world are:

  1. New York City
  2. London
  3. Paris
  4. Tokyo
  5. Reykjavik
  6. Singapore
  7. Seoul
  8. Toronto
  9. Hong Kong
  10. Amsterdam
City Country Population
BirminghamUnited States207,235
ValladolidSpain303,613
VigoSpain307,056
SarajevoBosnia And Herzegovina343,661
BilbaoSpain348,518
WellingtonNew Zealand416,828
BernSwitzerland433,501
BratislavaSlovakia437,120
MiamiUnited States478,251
MurciaSpain504,491
DuisburgGermany519,056
VilniusLithuania539,978
BaselSwitzerland562,710
BaltimoreUnited States575,584
SkopjeNorth Macedonia600,708
GenevaSwitzerland620,131
RigaLatvia627,763
StuttgartGermany633,808
DohaQatar646,177
ManamaBahrain663,893
ZagrebCroatia684,524
BostonUnited States695,506
SevilleSpain702,386
FlorenceItaly709,064
WashingtonUnited States714,153
ZaragozaSpain733,825
FrankfurtGermany784,780
NottinghamUnited Kingdom794,008
ValenciaSpain835,341
San FranciscoUnited States883,255
LiverpoolUnited Kingdom906,443
NiceFrance943,342
JerusalemIsrael944,188
AntwerpBelgium1,047,613
OsloNorway1,056,180
LilleFrance1,068,051
TbilisiGeorgia1,078,846
CologneGermany1,128,652
DublinIreland1,241,953
SofiaBulgaria1,284,311
PragueCzech Republic1,312,199
PortoPortugal1,316,445
HelsinkiFinland1,316,757
DallasUnited States1,347,120
CopenhagenDenmark1,358,608
BelgradeSerbia1,401,786
ZurichSwitzerland1,407,572
OttawaCanada1,407,928
San DiegoUnited States1,427,720
Abu DhabiUnited Arab Emirates1,511,768
MunichGermany1,553,373
RosarioArgentina1,553,530
San AntonioUnited States1,581,730
CordobaArgentina1,584,599
PhiladelphiaUnited States1,585,010
MarseilleFrance1,613,797
StockholmSweden1,656,571
NovosibirskRussia1,675,866
GlasgowUnited Kingdom1,680,669
LyonFrance1,733,581
PhoenixUnited States1,733,630
Santa CruzBolivia1,748,540
MontevideoUruguay1,759,906
BudapestHungary1,771,865
HamburgGermany1,788,995
WarsawPoland1,789,620
TurinItaly1,795,235
La PazBolivia1,881,796
Panama CityPanama1,899,081
QuitoEcuador1,900,571
RabatMorocco1,907,071
AlmatyKazakhstan1,927,623
ViennaAustria1,944,910
MinskBelarus2,038,822
BrusselsBelgium2,095,688
AmmanJordan2,182,151
NaplesItaly2,182,885
HoustonUnited States2,323,660
BakuAzerbaijan2,370,776
TunisTunisia2,402,680
VancouverCanada2,606,351
BirminghamUnited Kingdom2,626,374
ChicagoUnited States2,679,080
ManchesterUnited Kingdom2,750,120
CaliColombia2,809,508
DubaiUnited Arab Emirates2,921,376
CaracasVenezuela2,945,858
Guatemala CityGuatemala2,983,174
KievUkraine3,000,604
GuayaquilEcuador3,042,941
MilanItaly3,144,473
AthensGreece3,153,255
Kuwait CityKuwait3,177,315
Santo DomingoDominican Republic3,388,809
BerlinGermany3,566,791
CuritibaBrazil3,726,050
DoualaCameroon3,793,363
CasablancaMorocco3,793,585
SalvadorBrazil3,880,314
Los AngelesUnited States3,983,540
MontrealCanada4,247,446
Tel AvivIsrael4,263,745
RomeItaly4,278,350
Cape TownSouth Africa4,709,990
BrasiliaBrazil4,727,902
NairobiKenya4,922,192
SydneyAustralia4,991,654
MelbourneAustralia5,061,439
AnkaraTurkey5,215,747
Saint PetersburgRussia5,504,305
BarcelonaSpain5,624,498
JohannesburgSouth Africa5,926,668
SingaporeSingapore5,991,801
Belo HorizonteBrazil6,139,774
TorontoCanada6,254,571
MadridSpain6,668,865
SantiagoChile6,811,595
RiyadhSaudi Arabia7,387,817
Kuala LumpurMalaysia8,210,745
New York CityUnited States8,230,290
Ho Chi Minh CityVietnam8,837,544
LondonUnited Kingdom9,425,622
NagoyaJapan9,565,642
SeoulSouth Korea9,967,677
BangkokThailand10,722,815
LimaPeru10,882,757
JakartaIndonesia10,915,364
ParisFrance11,078,546
BogotaColombia11,167,392
ShenzhenChina12,591,696
MoscowRussia12,593,252
Rio De JaneiroBrazil13,544,462
GuangzhouChina13,635,397
TianjinChina13,794,450
ManilaPhilippines14,158,573
LagosNigeria14,862,111
KolkataIndia14,974,073
Buenos AiresArgentina15,257,673
IstanbulTurkey15,415,197
KarachiPakistan16,459,472
OsakaJapan19,110,616
MumbaiIndia20,667,656
BeijingChina20,896,820
CairoEgypt21,322,750
Mexico CityMexico21,918,936
ShanghaiChina27,795,702
TokyoJapan37,339,804

Smart Cities by Population 2021