Working Group Meeting

Smart Cities - Sustainable Solutions


Today, more than half of the world’s population lives in urban areas. Metropolitan regions are centers of economic activity and increased resource consumption. Rapid urbanization requires an interdisciplinary and integrative perspective to urban management in order to foster synergies and ensure sustainable urban development. Smart Cities are a buzzword to describe the ideal city of the future and at the same time the most promising approach to sustainably transform urban life and working environments.

After discussing the concept of Smart Cities in a broader perspective in a workshop in 2018, this conference explored different approaches to help planning for smart and sustainable cities using alternative concepts, planning tools, design and innovative research methodologies. It brought together researchers working across the fields of smart and sustainable cities, engineering, water management, health, computer science, and additional disciplines, especially from the social sciences addressing the governance of science, technology and innovation (STI) systems, i.e. research transfer and nexus policies.

Future cities will take advantage of new technologies. However, all technologies and applications remain useless without efficient implementation policies, integrative governance and economic models at the city scale (e.g. energy distribution, transportation plans, waste management, etc.). In this regard, the conference was a response to the urgent need for integrative policies and effective implementation mechanisms including a multi-sectoral and interdisciplinary approach to smart and sustainable urban development.

STI systems are the key driver of sustainable developments. Research institutions, policy makers, and practitioners from the private sector are integral parts of the STI system. Thus, the conference addressed new approaches of the processes that affect integrated policy-making and the cooperation among policy practitioners and science and technology managers as well as industry representatives.