Cities today are facing increasing competition both locally and globally to become more intelligent, more integrated and more innovative with the evolution of new “smart” technologies.
Cities must also contend with an array of challenges associated with funding, foreign investment, and public-private partnerships for this desired infrastructure.
There is also added pressure on cities to meet specific requirements that help trace the various funding of these projects and vendors, and tightly oversee the general financial management and governance of infrastructure transformation projects, says Yasser Mahmud and Joel Cherkis of Oracle.
This trickles down to project team members and managers who must monitor project performance and progress in real time, track ongoing project costs, manage risks, contractors and any changes that occur for ongoing projects.
Similarly, city leaders also face a number of issues within both the public and private sector domains. These issues vary from the increasing expectations of customer service and delivery, revenue expectations and challenges, and the increasing need for sustainability.
Smart city infrastructure projects and developments range in complexity, but all personnel involved require specific real-time and actionable information to ensure operational success and effectiveness.
With two-thirds of world’s population now predicted to live in urban areas by 2050 (World Urbanisation Prospects report), it is now paramount for cities to engage with smart city initiatives to ensure these infrastructure upgrades are a transformational success and are sustainable for the future.
Smart city initiatives – Offering key solutions
The adoption of smart city initiatives is specifically aimed to improve infrastructure and sustainability. Cities are choosing to employ the most effective technology to ensure that infrastructure projects start and finish on time, are executed as seamlessly as possible, and ultimately ensure the general quality of life for citizens.
According to recent research by GOV.UK, it’s estimated that the London smart city market will spend up to £8.8bn (US$10.98 billion) on smart city solutions by 2020. £4.6bn ($5.74 billion — almost half) will be spent within, energy, water, waste, transport and health.
The deployment of smart city technology and data-driven solutions vary within each sector, but city leaders must all align their objectives with their project portfolios and agendas to ensure the desired outcomes.
Not only is it important for solutions to work across multiple verticals, but also in a completely transparent manner to quicken the process. This is why it is important to have fully-integrated solutions within smart city portfolio management (PPM).
By harnessing smart city initiatives and the right solutions to execute, a city can benefit from a number of improved services and potentially create more opportunities for economic growth.
The continuous development of smart city and IoT technologies, services and platforms, are allowing solutions to be applicable to more verticals and multiple markets and to connect a city’s infrastructure to the citizen’s themselves. The increase of productivity within a city’s services has the potential to directly increase the quality of life for citizens.
The authors of this blog are Yasser Mahmud, vice president of Industry Strategy, Oracle Construction and Engineering Global Business Unit and Joel Cherkis, global vice president of Infrastructure, Government, Education, and Health, Oracle’s Global Industry Solutions Group
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