ISO 37120 : ISO standards for world cities has been created

There has been talk of an ISO standard to compare smart cities for a little while now. I recall a conversation in CAP Gemini’s London offices around 2 years ago when the concept was mooted by some leading thinkers in industry, academia and those who are just downright disruptive (in a good way!). Finally, clear performance data for comparing the world’s cities is possible (this story comes via @Citiscope).

[Citiscope.org as an independent, nonprofit media startup, focused on finding innovations in cities around the world and spreading the word about them through independent, quality journalism. Its storytellers are local writers, people who understand the context and culture where urban ideas are born and can track the progress of those ideas. Citiscope is supported by the Ford and Rockefeller Foundations. Get Citiscope’s weekly featured world city innovation story and roundup of news and reports on global cities at citiscope.org/subscribe]

Now, cities everywhere will have an internationally agreed upon set of standards indicating data that should be collected, and the definitions and criteria to use in collecting it. They won’t be legally required to do so, but they’re likely to be under pressure from citizen, business, academic and other groups insisting they use the ISO standards so that their performance can be benchmarked clearly against peer cities, both in-country and — in today’s increasingly globalized economy — across the globe.

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Apple Pie is 2nd Favourite in the USA or Big data is better data (TED.com)

If you’re sick of the term ‘big data’ then take a look at the excellent Ted Talk performed by Kenneth Cukier.

His talk, “Big data is better data” makes it easy to understand the potential big data can have for all of us in understanding patterns of behaviour we’re simply not smart enough to recognise. By being able to better interrogate big data through asking better questions, we can see why Americans’ actually prefer many other types of pie – they just eat more apple pie.

Lord Nicholas Stern: The state of the climate — and what we might do about it

An inspiring economist. There’s a sentence you wont write too many times in your life, but Lord Stern is the exception to the rule. Here he makes a compelling case for a better world, not by using numbers, but by appealing to our our instinct. He uses Beijing, a city in which he lived, as an example of how unfettered growth can have significant environmental consequences for our health, our wellbeing and the planet.

The last century has seen unprecedented change. The next 100 years could me make or break for the human species. Do we positively respond to the challenges – because Stern thinks we have the knowledge, but we need the political will. Give yourself 17 minutes to watch the TED.com video and hear it for yourself.

Lord Nicholas Stern: The state of the climate — and what we might do about it | Talk Video | TED.com.

Cities More Effective than National Government?…

Cities More Effective than National Government?….

From Miroslav Damyanov (via Linkedin) While national governments get less done – due to the fact they are cumbersome and stuck in party ideology – more problems (e.g., climate change, inequality, unemployment and crime) are solved at the city level. 

Worth watching the program VPRO Tegenlicht De macht aan de stad (EN: The Power of the City) : http://www.npo.nl/vpro-tegenlicht/28-09-2014/VPWON_1219700

 

Will mayors one day rule the world?

BBC News – Will mayors one day rule the world?

Mayors running mega-cities like Istanbul, Dhaka or Sao Paulo have budgets far in excess of many countries. But they also have a whole range of problems – from potholes to gargantuan traffic jams – that need sorting out here and now.

Different democratic systems (or otherwise) afford some mayors direct and indirect influence way beyond the geo-political jurisdiction. If that influence changes it could send ripples across the nations, continents and globe. This could be particularly significant where primary cities far outweigh the economic powers of secondary and tertiary cities – for example, in London. The @corecities recognise this and are grouping together to make an alternative and, most likely, a more sustainable proposition for their own good and for that of the nation as a whole.