More than a dozen energy and technology firms have formed the Smart Cities Council to provide cities with tools and best practices.
The council is gathering together firms in areas such as smart energy, water and transportation. These firms, which make up the Council’s Steering Committee, include Alstom, AT&T, Bechtel, Cisco, Electricite de France (EDF), General Electric (GE), IBM, Itron, Microsoft, National Grid, Qualcomm and S&C Electric.
A “smart city” uses digital technology to deliver better, more efficient services to its citizens. It enables access to information via data collected from devices and sensors that are embedded in roadways, energy and water infrastructure, buildings and more. For example, smart power and water grids improve efficiency and reliability, as well as provide customers with detailed information to help them reduce their bills.
Thousands of smart city projects are underway around the globe, but major hurdles remain. Cities have significant questions and challenges with regard to the four chief barriers of technology, financing, policy and citizen engagement.