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IDC Energy Insights Launches the Smart Cities Maturity Model: A New Framework to Define the Smart City Journey

(PresseBox) (MILAN, ) IDC Energy Insights has announced the release of its Smart Cities Maturity Model and a report tracing a city's journey to becoming "smart" based on the dimensions of government, buildings, mobility, energy, environment and services across three major stages of data availability and its level of integration.

The IDC Energy Insights Smart Cities Maturity Model is the next step in the IDC Smart Cities Index, which was created to rank cities' "smartness" (see Smart Cities Update: IDC Smart Cities Index and Its Application in Spain, IDC Energy Insights #EIRS56T, October 2011). After successful application in Spain, the IDC Smart Cities Index is currently being applied in Germany and France, and being evaluated for application in other countries and regions around the world. For more insight into the IDC Energy Insights Smart Cities Maturity Model, please see the report Becoming a Smart City: IDC Energy Insights' Smart Cities Maturity Model (IDC Energy Insights #EIRS02U, March 2012). The report includes IDC Energy Insights' recommendations designed to create concrete opportunities for actions for cities undertaking the smart city journey.

As smart city initiatives are undertaken by many cities around the world, the focus and improvement efforts by city managers are directed by each city's priorities. The ecosystem of public and private companies involved might also determine diverse clusters of action. For instance, in the case of Málaga or Amsterdam, there is a strong push from the respective energy players involved. In cities such as Madrid and Stockholm, however, elements such as public safety and traffic congestion management were the initial starting points.

It is clear that "one size fits all" is not a viable or practical approach when initiating the journey toward smartness. The smart city journey is a multifaceted transformation, and there are many steps to consider, including the critical role of information and communications technology (ICT) in enabling a city's progressive maturity. The IDC Energy Insights Smart Cities Maturity Model identifies three macro stages of maturity - scattered, integrated, and connected - for each of the five "smartness dimensions." These three stages of maturity are further defined by two factors: data availability and its respective level of integration. The maturity model suggests that in the transformation process the level of coordination among all existing and planned initiatives might vary in relation to a city's maturity. Therefore a smart city might not only be at different levels of maturity in different timeframes, but might also be simultaneously at different stages for each of the smartness dimensions.

"Becoming a smart city is a journey of continuous improvements in the fields of government, buildings, mobility, energy, environment, and services," said Roberta Bigliani, head, EMEA, IDC Energy Insights. "Data availability and its respective level of integration evolve during the journey, and the IDC Smart Cities Maturity Model traces it from open data existing at the scattered level, to valuable information existing at the integrated level, and finally to ubiquitous information existing at the connected level."

Gaia Gallotti, senior research analyst, IDC Energy Insights, said, "Since the smart city journey will never be a walk in the park, it is crucial to have the appropriate processes in place, sustained by strong leadership, strong innovation capabilities and collective intelligence, the right governance, adequate financial resources, and the right amount of flexibility."

About IDC Energy Insights

IDC Energy Insights assists energy businesses and IT leaders, as well as the suppliers that serve them, in making more effective technology decisions by providing accurate, timely, and insightful fact-based research and consulting services. Staffed by senior analysts with decades of industry experience, our global research analyzes and advises on business and technology issues facing the utility and oil and gas industries. International Data Corporation (IDC) is the premier global provider of market intelligence, advisory services, and events for the information technology market. IDC is a subsidiary of IDG, the world's leading technology, media, research, and events company. For more information, please visit www.idc-ei.com or email info@idc-ei.com.

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