Abu Dhabi & Dubai top regional smart cities indices

By Backend Office, Desk Reporter
Dubai Skyline at Night
Representational Image

Institute for Management Development’s (IMD) 2020 Smart City Index has ranked both Dubai and Abu Dhabi as the best smart cities in the MENA Region for the use of technology to enhance the lives of their citizens.

The second edition of the index co-developed with Singapore University for Technology and Design (SUTD) has placed the UAE capital, Abu Dhabi at 42nd and regional economic capital Dubai at 43rd on the global list.

The cities were ranked on the basis of economic and technical data, as well as the perceptions of citizens about the place.

Singapore, Helsinki and Zurich topped this year’s global index with New York, London and Paris find top three spots on IESE Cities in Motion Index.

IESE Cities in Motion Index

Hundreds of respondents from 109 countries were surveyed on their city’s technical provisions at five main areas:

  1. Opportunities
  2. Governance
  3. Accessibility
  4. Activities
  5. Health and safety

The rankings this year reflect the fact that cities have different technology approaches as pandemic management becomes more important for governments.

Arturo Bris, IMD Professor said, “We cannot ignore the impact of COVID-19. Those with better technology manage the pandemic better. Smart cities are not the solution, but technology helps”.

This year’s rankings highlight the potential for cities to expand beyond the nation’s capital. Bilbao does better in the 2020 rankings than Madrid while Birmingham rose by 12 positions compared to London which moved just by five.

Through the implementation of technology, Mayors and local authorities have the power to improve the well-being of citizens. “The American city of Boston is a good example of how the management of its city by its mayor makes a big difference,” Bris added.