This report examines digital transformation (DX) in Smart Cities, enabled by the key technology groups that are the focus of Transforma Insights’ research. The report focusses on city operations and administration rather than the full range of technological changes currently taking place within many cities, excluding aspects such as building automation, smart homes, smart grids, and smart utility meters.
Many city authorities have sought to modernise their city infrastructure with the aim of improving the quality of life for their residents. With rising urbanisation, increasing traffic congestion, air quality challenges, and security concerns authorities often feel obliged to introduce technological solutions and so contribute to the evolution of cities into smart cities. Currently, the majority of the world’s population resides in cities and most of the world’s GDP is generated by urban centres, which puts pressure on generally limited city resources. To be successful the smart city ecosystem requires a cohesive collaboration between residents, businesses, and the relevant authorities to transform a city into a smart, environment friendly, and secure place to live and work.
Overall, we have identified nine (9) key domains of change in cities, urban areas, and campus environments and that characterise smart city environments. These are discussed in more detail in this document and comprise:
Collectively, the concepts listed above will bring significant changes to smart cities in the coming years.
This report focusses on digital transformation in Smart Cities as enabled by the key technology groups that are the focus of Transforma Insights’ research. These technology groups comprise:
Clearly, not all of these technology groups are directly relevant to smart cities, but many of them are highly relevant (including IoT, Artificial Intelligence, Data Sharing, and others).
Accordingly, the aim of this document is not to chart the future direction of smart cities, but to highlight the key areas of change, enabled by new and emerging technologies. The bulk of this report discusses these key areas of change and includes an overview of each area together with discussion of key benefits and an analysis of key vendors for each area. We also identify key enabling technologies for each area (from the list above) and provide summary details of illustrative case studies that are available in Transforma Insights’ Best Practice & Vendor Selection database.
The purpose of the document is two-fold. Firstly, from the perspective of a practitioner working in city administration, the document highlights new and emerging aspects of change that should impact in the next few years. Secondly, from the perspective of potential vendors in the Smart Cities space, it highlights key emerging areas of opportunity to sell new products, services, and solutions. Our analysis of the key technologies that enable each of the identified areas of digital transformation will help vendors of horizontal (technology-specific) capabilities to identify the contexts in which they may be able to secure new business opportunities.
Specific exclusions from the scope of this report (but which are all discussed in other Transforma Insights reports) include:
The final section of the report provides an analysis of key vendors supporting the identified solution areas, together with an analysis of leading smart cities with details of the kinds of solutions that each has deployed.