Amsterdam & Eindhoven rated among world’s smartest cities

The most recent survey of world cities to discover which were the "smartest" has placed both Amsterdam and Eindhoven in its top 20.

The IESE Cities in Motion Index (ICIM), produced by IESE Business School in Spain, examined 135 cities worldwide, eventually crowning Tokyo as the smartest city, followed by London and New York.

Eindhoven was ranked 15, followed by Amsterdam at 16. Other European cities in the top 20 included Zurich, Paris, Geneva, Copenhagen and Stockholm.

Amsterdam as a smart city

The cities were assessed in 10 different areas, with cities ranked in each of these sub-categories.

Areas in which Amsterdam performed well were Technology (3), Urban Planning (4), International Projection (11), Governance and Transportation (both 12).

Its lowest-performing areas were Human Capital (71), Public Management (46) and Social Cohesion (26).

Eindhoven as a smart city

Despite being from the same country, the two cities had some interesting variations.

While they both had around the same scores for Urban Planning and Governance, Eindhoven did much better when it came to Social Cohesion, ranking first from among all cities surveyed. It was also much stronger in Human Capital, coming sixth.

It fell behind the capital in International Projection (61) and Technology (37), and was also comparably weaker in Economy: 53 to Amsterdam’s 19. Neither city scored particularly highly in Public Management.

Ingredients of a smart city

According to the report, there is no single model for success in terms of a smart city. Nor is it enough for cities to stand out only in one dimension.

For example, even those placed in the highest ranks have problems: top three cities Tokyo, London and New York all have very low rankings for social cohesion.

The report states that cities should strive to achieve acceptable minimum rates overall, as the areas they examined are generally interrelated. Thus, not taking a holistic approach to city development means that the report found few truly successful cases. Apparently, too many of the institutions expected to drive change in urban hubs take a short-term and piecemeal approach.

One example they offered was that there are still many civic leaders who still see technology as the main ingredient of an intelligent city, without considering other dimensions that define them.

Therefore, they state, "the overarching goal should be to develop urban spaces where people can live and carry out their activities with the greatest opportunity and probabilities of success, within a liveable, creative and socially responsible environment."

"Cities should work towards creating more attractive places and generating healthier, happier and more prosperous lives for all citizens."

For more information, read the full report.

Sources: IESE, The Guardian

Alexandra Gowling


Alexandra Gowling

Alexandra is an Australian citizen and an experienced expat, having spent (quite a bit of) time in Asia before coming to the Netherlands a year ago. She enjoys writing, reading...

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