Issue 40 – July 2012
As more of the global population becomes urbanised, the strain on traditional delivery mechanisms and supply of resources poses a significant challenge to the sustainable growth of cities. This applies not only to physical resources (energy, water, waste management) but also to social and economic resources (healthcare, traffic management, and logistics).
Smart city technologies based on digital infrastructure and digital services offer one of the few, possibly the only, viable alternative means to effectively monitor and manage physical and social resource in the built environment. Digital technologies can collect large amounts of data to support very close matching of supply availability against demand requirements. Historic information can then correlate with actual events to inform immediate reaction. The new communications potential from sensors on buildings, roads, and other elements of the city (and – crucially – the sharing of data between service delivery channels) will – if integrated – enable the city to improve services, monitor and control resource usage, and react to real-time information.
The UK Department for Business, Innovation and Skills (BIS) has commissioned the British Standards Institution (BSI) to develop a Standards strategy for smart cities in the UK. The aim of the strategy is to identify the role of Standards in accelerating the implementation of smart cities and providing assurance to citizens that the risks are being managed appropriately. The findings and recommendations are based on analysis of the existing Standards landscape, identified stakeholder needs and therefore reflect key priority areas in which a Standards programme is required to help ensure the success of a UK smart cities programme.
Summarised from BSI Sustainability Newsletter, June 2012