Smarter Cities 2025 Research

“The benefits associated with becoming a smarter city have the potential to raise GDP by 21 percent and support population growth by 13 percent.”

Smarter Cities 2025 is the first-of-its-kind research with a brief “to conduct ground-breaking research into the impact of smart city solutions on urban performance”. ESI ThoughtLab, the visionary thought-leadership arm of Econsult Solutions Inc., developed Smarter Cities 2025 in consultation with in-house economists and a cross-sector coalition of organisations, including Ferrovial Services who were one of the nine major sponsors.

As a Ferrovial company, Broadspectrum is uniquely positioned to bring this ground-breaking research into the Australian and New Zealand markets; our clients are advancing the need to innovate business operations, strategic intelligence and the establishment disruptive processes to transform societies into smart cities – and we’re guiding our partners along the way.

Participants of Smarter Cities 2025 included local governments and leaders from 55 countries and 136 cities, and all with varying levels of economic development, social and geographic diversity, and classification within ESI ThoughtLab’s smart city continuum (a tool concurrently developed via a deep-dive analysis).

All participant cities had populations spanning 35,000 to over 37-million citizens which represented approximately 10% of the world’s population.

Further, 750 corporations, business leaders and research partners operating in specialist areas, including urban technology, financial technology (i.e. fin-techs) and engineering, worked on the Smarter Cities 2025.

ESI ThoughtLab undertook qualitative and quantitative surveys with all participants, drew on select secondary sources and created micro- and macro-economic models which quantified the direct, indirect and catalytic benefits of smart city investments for participant cities, in addition to 11-identified proxy cities. Access ESI ThoughLab’s Smarter Cities Benchmark Tool to determine how your city is positioned across various measures.

Benefits of the proxy cities allow non-participating cities to identify a city with similar characteristics and extrapolate findings from the Smarter Cities 2025 research into their society. Benchmark your city against another within ESI ThoughtLab’s Smarter Cities Benchmark Tool.

Outcomes of the Smarter Cities 2025 produced rigorous benchmarking analysis of smart city practices and performance results.

  • 10 pillars of smart cities (5 foundational and 5 tech-enablers)
    • Foundational: governance, economy, infrastructure, talent and funding
    • Tech-enablers: mobility, environment, public safety, public health and payment systems.
  • Analysis of ROI from the 10 smart city pillars
  • Smart city performance impact modelling
  • Identification of avenues to fund smart initiatives  
  • Economic issues related to businesses across all smart city maturity stages.

“City leaders need to match top-down initiatives with bottom-up sentiment to create sustainable value. Smart mobility is a significant opportunity for city governments because it offers multiple benefits—including time savings and emissions improvements—as well as giving a boost to the local economy.”

Mark Saunders, Director, Centre of Excellence for Cities, Ferrovial Services.

The convergence of technological advancements with societies in which we live, breathe, work, shop and build families has ultimately rendered analytically-supported smart cities a reality.

This interactive ebook presents ESI ThoughtLab’s key findings, along with insights into best practices, performance metrics and calls-to-action.

Information regarding the issues dissected and findings advanced by Smarter Cities 2025.

Roadmap for smarter cities.

Benchmarking URL
Identify how your city is positioned across various metrics and benchmark via the City Comparison Tool.


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