New index puts Prague among the world’s top 20 smart cities

Prague, photo: Mr. Granger, Public Domain

Prague finished 19th among 102 cities around the world in the first edition of a Smart City Index, put together by Switzerland’s IMD Competitiveness Centre and the Singapore University of Technology and Design. The index assesses the cities’ efforts in embracing smart technologies to improve their citizens’ lives. Prague finished ahead of London in the survey, in which Singapore ranked first.

Prague,  photo: Mr. Granger,  Public Domain
I asked Kryštof Kruliš from the Consumer Forum, which is the project’s partner in the Czech Republic, to outline more details:

“The index is based on two pillars - one reflects structures and the other one technologies. In both of those pillars, people who took part in the survey provided responses in such areas as health and safety, mobility, activities available in the city, opportunities and governance.

“In the pillar of structures, for instance, mobility concerned the issue of traffic congestions and how it is solved, or the issue of public transportation, while in the pillar of technologies, mobility included such areas as car sharing applications and how they reduce congestions or the availability of online scheduling of tickets.

Prague finished 19th among the 102 cities which took part in the survey. Is it a good result?

“In my view, it is an excellent result. It is far better than the competitiveness of the whole country. The Czech Republic this year remained in the 33rd position in the competitiveness rankings.

"If you are a foreign investor or an employee in a digital company, you would be much more attracted to move to Prague and connect your career with the capital than anywhere else in the country.”

In which areas did the Czech capital score well?

“Prague scored very well in the area of job and education opportunities. As far as mobility is concerned there was an above average rating for public transportation. Prague ranked quite high in terms of public safety.

“In the area of activities, cultural activities were on top among all of the cities included in the index. It includes availability of shows, bars, museum and whether they are satisfactory or not.”

Where do you see space for improvement?

“Definitely the traffic congestion was considered as below average in comparison to other big cities.

“The issue of air pollution and corruption together with affordable housing, those were primarily the issues which the respondents consider as areas where there is space for improvement.”