Barcelona City Council and World Bank sign an agreement to share knowledge on urban technology and innovation
Gabriela has to get up early every day. Her day begins at 5 a.m., the time she needs to wake up to travel the hour and half that separates her from her work and to be on time at 7 a.m. Gabriela lives in the metropolitan area of Mexico City and spends about 16 hours a week travelling between home and work.
Cities are growing at an unprecedented speed and represent great challenges for those who have to manage resources that enable citizens like Gabriela receive better public services. The city populations of emerging economies are expected to double between 2000 and 2030, from 2 billion to 4 billion people. Megacities, such as Mexico City, Manila and São Paulo, are already home to 20 million people or more.
City leaders are concerned about the quality of life for citizens, and how they can provide better services for their citizens. Cities in the developing world can build on the knowledge of those that have been successful before them and combine these insights with homegrown solutions and innovations.
The World Bank and the City Council of Barcelona signed a Memorandum of Understanding to jointly promote innovation as well as share knowledge on sustainable urban development and the use of Information, Communication and Technology (ICT) in the delivery of public services.
The agreement between both institutions will allow the co-creation of new knowledge as well as the dissemination of good practices that the city of Barcelona and its partners have developed over the years. Barcelona has been working with many city and local government leaders across Europe and their stakeholders amongst industry, academia and civil society --, a network that can now be better leveraged for the benefit of the World Bank and its clients.
Through technical assistance, the City of Barcelona will facilitate peer-to-peer learning on how to build regionally networked Smart Cities and promote innovation, with emphasis in the use of ICT applications for service delivery.
Barcelona is a city at the cutting edge of technology adoption, policy making and global dialogue. The city annually hosts the Mobile World Congress, as well as the World Smart City Expo; two global reference events on these topics. The aim of Mobile World Congress is to drive and develop innovative mobile initiatives with the capacity to transform the traditional way of doing things, both in industry and in peoples' day-to-day lives. Barcelona is also a leading practice on smart cities in Europe, integrating open innovation and ICT technologies in municipal public service design and delivery. The city has integrated open data and innovation in its city strategy and it has an urban lab to test ICT applications.
Read the press release