Moscow has been developing so fast in recent years that it has entered the list of the most advanced world cities in terms of IT development, and it won’t stop. At Connected Cities 2020, the largest forum of urban leaders dedicated to the Smart City concept, foreign experts shared their opinions about Moscow.
Moscow has Wi-Fi everywhere. This blew me away
Jamie Cudden, Dublin City Council’s Smart City Programme Manager (Dublin, Ireland).
I was really blown away by how the city team imagines the process of implementing digital technologies. As soon as you arrive in the city, you notice sthat there are Wi-Fi hotspots everywhere. The level of internet availability is very high.
I was also very impressed with the implementation of digital payment services and the development of e-government. We have already familiarised ourselves with some of the electronic services offered in Moscow, and visited several integrated government services’ centres. These are cutting-edge solutions. I believe that in this case, not only is Moscow not lagging behind other world cities, but rather outpacing them in many ways. I can’t leave out the high level of development of the city’s solutions for security.
Moscow uses cameras everywhere. It is very important in promoting safety
Paola Pizano, Deputy Mayor for Innovation and Smart City (Turin, Italy)
Life in Moscow can be enjoyable! In my opinion, bicycle and scooter rentals are the best thing here. I believe a shared economy to be extremely important for a city. I also love the design of the streets: the pavements (sidewalks) are very wide so people can walk freely. This is no less important than high tech.
Regarding technology, I have noticed other things as well – specifically, that there are cameras everywhere in Moscow. This is important for ensuring people’s safety.
Like Moscow, Turin is concentrating on the economics of data, since artificial intelligence needs it to operate. So we are basically doing the same things as you, but the fact is, we cannot use data as freely. I know you can afford it; but we do not have the resources to do that.
The idea to create a network of government services’ centres is simply brilliant!
Marius Sylvestersen, Smart City programme manager (Copenhagen, Denmark)
The idea to create a network of government services’ centres is simply brilliant! We are doing basically the same thing in Copenhagen. You cannot have people forever running from one institution to another. The ability to access all government services in one place makes life much easier.
We are trying to reduce the time government officials spend interacting with citizens to a minimum, so, just like Moscow, we urge people to use electronic services. But these centres are necessary as well, since people who are not fond of using personal computers can be found everywhere, and they must have an opportunity to come to these centres in person. But the number of centres like this in Copenhagen is low.
We will follow Moscow’s example
Craig Chung, City of Sydney Councillor (Sydney, Australia)
I believe that Moscow has every chance to become a very progressive smart digital city; it has the necessary opportunities and resources. These chances are very good, I can assure you. It is an ambitious strategy, of course, but in a good way. Everything is changing very quickly in the digital world and in smart cities, and we need to try to predict what will happen by 2030. Today, we might think that this plan is too ambitious, but in 12 years we’ll look back and realise that it was not that hard to implement it in the first place, since everything is developing so quickly. Moscow has the resources for its development; it has the government’s support as well. That is why we believe the 2030 Strategy to be an achievable plan.
Not all cities have the opportunity to use data in public spaces that Moscow has. It has to do with the difference in laws, too. That’s why we have a great opportunity to see how everything will turn out in Moscow, which is using state-of-the-art technical solutions, and how we, in turn, we can make data more accessible. It is very important to gather data and implement artificial intelligence technologies and use all that to anticipate peoples’ needs and desires. It is also important how government institutions use data to improve the quality of government services: this is exactly what people want.