The business case for building smart cities and regions

Building smart cities and regions is about a lot more than integrating intelligent technologies into our infrastructure and digital systems. The core ethos boils down to impact - improving the quality of life for all people regardless of socioeconomic or geographical barriers. This idea of putting people first is not new, but has just recently been accepted as the appropriate plan of attack for elected and public officials across the country. This means that we don't rush to play with the shiny object in the room, but instead, collaborate together to solve real problems, for real people, using smart technologies as a tool to support.

Implementing smart technologies and strategies into our systems and infrastructure planning helps leaders:

  • Cut costs

  • Generate revenue

  • Create value

So what is the business case for improving people's lives? It just so happens that taking an approach aimed at putting people first, revolving around building smart regions doesn't only bolster social mobility, but also catalyzes economic development in our urban, suburban, and rural cores where residents and visitors have easy access to information, transportation, and opportunities. Additionally, smart planning helps to alleviate otherwise strained municipal budgets by helping governments cut costs, generate new revenues, and create better experiences for residents and guests. Cost savings and revenue generation is enabled by optimizing or altogether replacing outdated systems and infrastructure. The 'three t's of smart planning' can ensure economic growth and opportunity: technology, transportation, and tourism. Enable access to information and opportunities via technology, move people around the city to jobs, education, healthcare, and leisure with smart mobility solutions, and inject new dollars into local economies through tourism and strategic growth.

The Three 'C's' of Smart Cities

  • Community

  • Collaboration

  • Connectivity

The Three 'T's' of Smart Cities:

  • Technology

  • Transportation

  • Tourism

Venture Smarter has been dedicated to helping leaders in government, business, and academia navigate smart cities and the digital transformations therein. Several questions must always be answered: What is a smart city? What applications can be used to benefit people or to optimize outdated infrastructure and systems? What is the cost and how will it be funded? How can we track and measure outcomes and impact? Can we use a budget neutral planning model?

As the vision changes place to place, so does the strategy. But certain focal points must not be overlooked if smart planning is meant to ensure systems interoperability, fiscal sustainability, and risk mitigation.

  • Technology and planning process standards should be in place,
  • interdisciplinary stakeholder groups must be engaged, and
  • projects must be launched with specific outcomes in mind that work together to create better places to live, work, and visit. 

Interested in learning more about how Venture Smarter helps leaders research, plan, fund, and build smart cities and regions? Let's set up a time to chat! Email to get in touch or fill out the 'contact us' form.

Written By:
Zack Huhn
Founder, Venture Smarter
Chair, IEEE Smart Cities Standards Committee (P2784)


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