Urban performance currently depends not only on a city’s endowment of hard infrastructure (physical capital), but also, and increasingly so, on the availability and quality of knowledge communication and social infrastructure (human and social capital). The latter form of capital is decisive for urban competitiveness. Against this background, the concept of the “smart city” has recently been introduced as a strategic device to encompass modern urban production factors in a common framework and, in particular, to highlight the importance of Information and Communication Technologies (ICTs) in the last 20 years for enhancing the competitive profile of a city. The present paper aims to shed light on the often elusive definition of the concept of the “smart city.” We provide a focused and operational definition of this construct and present consistent evidence on the geography of smart cities in the EU27. Our statistical and graphical analyses exploit in depth, for the first time to our knowledge, the most recent version of the Urban Audit data set in order to analyze the factors determining the performance of smart cities. We find that the presence of a creative class, the quality of and dedicated attention to the urban environment, the level of education, and the accessibility to and use of ICTs for public administration are all positively correlated with urban wealth. This result prompts the formulation of a new strategic agenda for European cities that will allow them to achieve sustainable urban development and a better urban landscape.

Smart cities in Europe

CARAGLIU, ANDREA ANTONIO;
2011

Abstract

Urban performance currently depends not only on a city’s endowment of hard infrastructure (physical capital), but also, and increasingly so, on the availability and quality of knowledge communication and social infrastructure (human and social capital). The latter form of capital is decisive for urban competitiveness. Against this background, the concept of the “smart city” has recently been introduced as a strategic device to encompass modern urban production factors in a common framework and, in particular, to highlight the importance of Information and Communication Technologies (ICTs) in the last 20 years for enhancing the competitive profile of a city. The present paper aims to shed light on the often elusive definition of the concept of the “smart city.” We provide a focused and operational definition of this construct and present consistent evidence on the geography of smart cities in the EU27. Our statistical and graphical analyses exploit in depth, for the first time to our knowledge, the most recent version of the Urban Audit data set in order to analyze the factors determining the performance of smart cities. We find that the presence of a creative class, the quality of and dedicated attention to the urban environment, the level of education, and the accessibility to and use of ICTs for public administration are all positively correlated with urban wealth. This result prompts the formulation of a new strategic agenda for European cities that will allow them to achieve sustainable urban development and a better urban landscape.
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Utilizza questo identificativo per citare o creare un link a questo documento: http://hdl.handle.net/11311/600300
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