The latest report titled ‘Smartest Cities of the Future’ was jointly outlined by International Data Corporation (IDC) in association with Cisco and the Federation of Indian Chambers of Commerce & Industry (FICCI).
The report is said to be a diligent framework that focuses on sustainable and inclusive (social, economic, and digital) development, and a smart city scorecard to measure the impact of intelligent solutions.
Further, the report recognizes that for sustainable urbanization, cities need to adopt a framework that is socially equitable, economically viable and environmentally sustainable.
Sameer Garde, President, Cisco India, and SAARC, adds “India is urbanizing rapidly and it is critical that our cities become ‘Smarter’ to offer better lives for citizens, foster innovation as well as drive economic growth. The findings of this report focus on digital inclusion, citizen convenience, and engagement, impact on public safety, revenue and environment, which are critical pillars to make cities competitive and sustainable. As outlined in the report, the impact of Vijayawada Golden Mile on the state economy, citizens and environment emphasize the role technology can play as an enabler of growth and sustainability. This report is a great example of how states can leverage technology in tackling infrastructure challenges, improve social, economic and environmental sustainability and provide next generation of services to its citizens.”
The report puts emphasis on the challenges of urbanization and recommends five major thrust areas:
- Continued innovative thinking and the empowerment of smart city decision makers to balance between risk and value.
- Enhancing execution capabilities through strategic public-private partnerships
- “Matchmake” the government demand with a sustained supply of technology innovation
- Smart City planners will need to invest in the concept of value capture funding and the immense benefits it brings.
- Smart city solution providers will need to craft go-to-market strategies that consider the customers’ and citizens’ desires for end-to-end solutions
The report underlines that investments in coordination with technology, value capture funding and strategic private-public partnerships will be the essential engines of growth for cities to achieve sustainable living.
IDC also observed that the power savings from a basic hypothesis of a city-wide smart initiative, such as smart lighting could help Vijayawada Municipal corporation save up to INR 35 crores per year (approximately US$ 5.22 million)
Venu Reddy, General Manager, IDC Centre for Consultancy and Research, “As we have observed with the Vijayawada Golden Mile project, smart cities are beginning to impact the lives of citizens. The benefits of technology-powered initiatives are expected to be manifold, including economic, social, and environmental benefits. However, this is only the beginning and to create a sustained impact, decision-makers need to innovate and understand the balance between risk and value continually.”
Shekar Viswanathan, Chairman – FICCI Karnataka State Council, also commented, “At FICCI, we believe infrastructure is the foundation for economic growth and well-being of a society and accord the highest priority to infrastructure development. The right investments in coordination with strategic public-private partnerships and technology, as the enabler, will ensure the social, economic and environmental well-being of our cities.”
Further, the report highlights the need for Value Capture Funding (VCF). The VCF framework is to better distribute the costs and benefits in funded infrastructure to facilitate a project that may perhaps otherwise not be taken up at all. The VCF framework is significant, as it enables private partners to participate and run projects that are sufficiently planned and backed by governmental agencies through value and risk sharing.
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