Smart cities

The following article is based on my own interpretation of the said events. Any material borrowed from published and unpublished sources has been appropriately referenced. I will bear the sole responsibility for anything that is found to have been copied or misappropriated or misrepresented in the following post.

Anindya Kumar Saha, MBA 2015-17, Vinod Gupta School of Management, IIT Kharagpur


A smart city by definition is a urban development vision to integrate multiple information and communication technology solutions in a secure fashion to manage a city’s assets- the city’s assets may include , but not limited to, local department’s information systems, schools, libraries, transportation systems, hospitals, power plants, law enforcement and other community services. The goal of building a smart city is to improve quality of life by using technology to improve the efficiency of services and to meet the resident’s needs.

Indian Prime Minister Mr. Modi has a vision to make smart cities in India to enhance the living of populace. Mr. Modi wants to build 100 smart cities in India and therefore the government has adapted a comprehensive plan for the management of urban green spaces. The focus of this urban program intends to help fast development of remote cities and major urban centres to become the attractions of overseas investment and jobs.

The standards of being recognized as a smart city must have three of the five infrastructure requirements such as energy management, water management, transport and travel, safety and security and solid waste management. Many stakeholders are involved in a smart city development and each project is also stimulated by array of drivers: Construct or invent a new economic model (economic driver), reduce energy consumption (the eco-sustainability driver), improve the quality of life in a city environment (social driver).

It is determined by the government that Delhi will be developed into a “global city” and the country’s first smart city will be established to facilitate it with all modern facilities. To be categorized as a smart city, there are certain principles that need to be embraced.

  1. A smart city should be economically driven and not technology driven.
  2. Each smart city should have a chief innovation officer to guide and coordinate investments.
  3. Smart city development should facilitate India’s own technology and innovation capabilities.
  4. A smart city partnership should result in new state or national enabling frameworks to scale innovation and foreign investment.
  5. India should ensure that its smart city partnership is a model of transparency and citizen engagement.

Main features of Modi’s 100 smart city project are actually the main attributes of the smart city. They include:

  1. Automatic traffic signal
  2. Better public transport facility
  3. Quick accident relief
  4. Smart traffic system
  5. Data center
  6. Face identification system to snitch criminals
  7. Control room for crime, health, services and transport

At last it can be said that new strategy of Modi has created enthusiasm amongst industry directors and urban leaders to enhance the status of cities in coming years. But it depends on the honest approach of leaders and business players who can develop good city policy that can bring desired outcomes such as sustainable, more prolific and better governed cities.




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