Singapore, Helsinki and Zurich Named World’s Smartest Cities

Singapore, Helsinki and Zurich Named World’s Smartest Cities

by September 18, 2020

Singapore, Helsinki and Zurich have been named as the world’s smartest cities this year knocking off many European cities according to the Smart City Index Report this year.

It is also worth noting that in addition to Zurich, another Swiss city that made the cut for the top 10 smart cities is Geneva, ranking at seventh.

The report released is a collaboration between the Institute for Management Development (IMD) and Singapore University of Technology and Design (SUTD).

The 2020 index ranked 109 cities, 7 more than in last year’s inaugural edition, by using both economic and technological data, taken together with citizens’ perceptions of how “smart” their cities were. It is published under the supervision of the IMD Smart City Observatory (SCO).

This year’s results offer key insights into how technology is playing a role in the COVID-19 era in a way that is likely to continue as there is a correlation between smarter cities and those handling the pandemic better.

In each city ranked, 120 citizens were asked questions in April and May 2020 on the technological provisions of their city across five key areas: health and safety, mobility, activities, opportunities and governance.

The final score for each city was computed using the perceptions of the last two years of the survey.

Smart City 2020 Index Ranking

Smart City 2020 Index Ranking

The top 3 cities this year represent a reshuffling of 2019’s scenario, which saw Singapore come in first, Zurich second and Oslo third. Some of the biggest changes and most significant findings in this year’s index, by contrast, were in underdeveloped cities.

The report explained how if you add free WiFi to a city such as Medellin (up 19 places in the ranking this year), citizens’ perceptions of a change in their quality of life though technology will be sizeable.

However, in an already highly developed city such as previous silver medalist Zurich, there is little to improve, so a lot has to be done to change perceptions.

Featured image credit: image from Pexels and Unsplash