The importance of ICT in sustainable cities

Stockholm ranks top overall in the Networked Society City Index 2013, Ericsson reports. The capital of Sweden is followed by London, Singapore and Paris.

The Ericsson Networked Society City Index 2013 underlines that sustainable urban development has a direct relationship with ICT maturity. In the report sustainability is measured in economic, social and environmental dimensions and the level of ICT infrastructure, affordability and usage.

When summing up all of this for 31 cities worldwide Stockholm remains in a leading position. That is no surprise. Sweden has for long been a mature nation regarding to ICT and not only Stockholm but also other cities in the country stands out as role models.

There is, as an example, the region of Malmö with a really hot startup milieu. And there is Umeå, the European Capital of Culture 2014, which was measured by Akamai a couple of years ago as the fastest broadband city in the western world. In the city UmeNet delivers broadband at neck braking 1000 Mbit/s. Only some Asian cities had an overall faster broadband.

The Networked Society City Index stresses the importance of ICT as a ground pillar for sustainable cities. Today cities are the home of more than half of the world’s population, by 2050 it will be two-third.

To make these growing cities sustainable ICT will be of tremendous need. Health and education has to relay on ICT. Innovation to connect ideas, people and investments depends on ICT. Solutions based on technology and ICT will be the foundation that environmental dimensions are built on.

Therefore the report is of great significance. When building our cities ICT has to be a foundation.