Tuesday, 19 August 2014

How to measure "SMARTNESS" of Smart Cities? Prime Minister’s vision of developing ‘one hundred smart cities’ in India:

The Prime Minister’s vision of developing ‘one hundred smart cities’, allocating about Rs
7,060 crore in the current fiscal as outlined in the budget is a laudable initiative, given the rural-urban migration and the hyper growth of cities in our country. Of late, many countries, especially in developed countries including Dubai, Amsterdam and Barcelona have embarked on smart city initiatives. Shanghai has taken the lead in China.

However, in India, at this point, except for broad themes such as ubiquitous connectivity and community Wi-Fi, details on what smart cities should have is missing.

In general, a smart city should have: (i) efficient delivery of public utilities such as water, electricity, solid waste, sanitation, and sewerage as well as associated government services (ii) mechanism for supply-demand matching of surface transport services to provide congestion free roads, and minimal waiting time for public transport commuters (iii) active surveillance, monitoring and alerts at vantage points in the city to provide the much required public safety for citizens and (iv) on-demand availability of reliable emergency services such as ambulance, fire safety.

In all these dimensions, information and communication technologies (ICT) plays a vital role. No wonder, companies such as IBM and Cisco are investing millions of dollars in incubating technologies that support smart city initiatives.

Important element is the design architecture of different ICT components of smart city projects.It is required to build platforms with open gateways, application program interfaces & open data sets so that expertise of numerous Indian IT firms (both small & large) & the huge developer communities can be tapped for building innovative applications & services.


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