Smart devolution

Policy Exchange

Two key policy programmes lie at the heart of the Government's work to make the UK's cities better, more vibrant and sustainable places to live, work and visit: city devolution and smart cities.

This report argues that a successful city strategy requires both to work together; each provides what the other needs. City devolution equips mayors with extensive new powers.

But those powers will fail to have impact without the tools to use them effectively; tools which smart cities can provide. Smart cities, meanwhile, offer a suite of remarkable technologies that can improve cities.

But those technologies will deliver little without the right people, powers, resources and skills; things that city devolution can put in place. The report also emphasises the shared dependency on data.

Mayors will require data to identify the scale and location of the problems they seek to tackle and the service demand they aim to meet.

Similarly, smart cities are first and foremost data-driven cities, using data to analyse and quantify aspects of city life so that better decisions can be made.

Download here.