The world's population is growing steadily. According to the United Nations, the world's population will grow to 9.7 billion people in 2050. By 2100, nearly 11 billion people could live on Earth. This rapid population growth is accompanied by an increased degree of urbanization. While around 55% of the world's population lived in urban areas in 2018, this proportion will rise to around 68% by 2050. Cities, therefore, face incredible problems such as environmental degradation and pollution, urban immobility, and increased energy demand.
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When it comes to air quality, cities that attract heavy industry are often some of the biggest victims. For the municipality of El Prat de Llobregat, just outside of Barcelona, air pollution is a huge problem. The area is an attractive place for industry, largely because of the region’s location: it’s sandwiched directly between the bustling Barcelona Airport on one side and the restless Port of Barcelona on the other. While industry often brings wealth to a region, it also brings its fair share of challenges.
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The impacts of climate change have already begun to cause damage to our planet. The Earth’s landscape has drastically transformed over the last century, and the natural world is under threat from rising sea levels, extreme weather events, and rapid urbanization. Our cities are growing, and their populations are swelling along with them.
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For the last two months, every day at 8 pm, I go out to the balcony and together with my neighbors, we clap for all of those that are in the trenches fighting against the covid-19: nurses, doctors, people working in elderly houses and hospital staff among others. This is the minimum that we, as a society, can do right now.
Unfortunately, this is perishable, and the history tell us that when a problem is over, we easily forget it. Now we have an opportunity to challenge the history: people, politicians, companies, the society, all of us we must change many things in an enduring way. We have to do it for us and for our descendants.
Smart Waste Management is one of the solutions for cities that can help us in the fight against the pandemic to reduce the infection risk and contribute to the health of residents.
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Streetlights, as they are today, have been a cause of concern for how much energy they consume as well as how they have been adding to the light pollution in cities, burning brightly while no one is around. These are just a few of the concerns that some solution providers have been aiming to address with their Smart Lighting solutions. They aim to make cities feel more safe, make lights more efficient, poles multi-functional and push costs of maintenance and energy down among others in various ways.
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In their eagerness to create breakthrough technologies and disruptive platforms, innovators sometimes collide with an established (and perhaps ill-suited) regulatory and policy-making process. In a previous article on e-scooters, we reported that a strategy of "permissionless innovation" enabled app-activated e-scooter startups to gain a precarious foothold in urban mobility markets. However, these startups soon discovered that safety and regulatory issues - including the lack of regulations in most situations - led to controversial relations with cities and citizens. In this article, we cover recent experiences, lessons learned and thoughts on the need for collaborative solutions. For an overview of the e-scooter market and its dynamics, read our article E-Scooters: A Passing Fad or Smart Mobility?
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Electric scooters appeal to those who want to move quickly and easily through urban streets at low cost while avoiding congestion and solving first mile / last mile mobility problems. However, menacing clouds - in the form of safety, regulatory and business model issues - linger above the nascent e-scooter sharing market, raising questions about its future. A key question is whether cities can find ways for this new micro-mobility service to add value to sustainable urban mobility. In this article, we explore the e-scooter market and competitive dynamics and offer a perspective on smart city challenges. To learn about the lessons learned from the city perspective regarding the introduction of e-scooter sharing, please read our article E-Scooters: A Collision Between Innovation And Controversy.
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In 2018, Leading Cities, a global nonprofit for Smart City growth and collaboration, launched AcceliCITY - a global Smart City startup competition that provides potential capital from a network of investors as well as the tools and knowledge of how to do business with cities. In this year’s edition 50 semi-finalists were selected from more than 500 applications from 43 countries. An international panel of Smart City experts judged each semi-finalist to select the 14 finalists that will gather in Boston (Sept. 30 - Oct. 4) for AcceliCITY’s Smart City Boot Camp.
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bee smart city partner Leading Cities is now accepting applications for its second edition of the AcceliCITY smart city startup accelerator. Last year’s inaugural edition of the contest worked with 27 semi-finalists selected from more than 550 applications from over 40 countries.
“The goal of the AcceliCITY program is to facilitate sustainable growth, resiliency and quality-of-life improvements for cities around the world by addressing the critical needs of Smart City startups,” says Michael Lake, President and CEO of Leading Cities. “These startups are developing the innovative solutions to municipal challenges in the 21st century.”.
AcceliCITY offers the chance for startups to secure what they need most - paid projects to build their portfolio and validate their solutions. This edition will focus on the challenges of smart water and smart mobility through pioneering partnerships with the cities of New Bedford, Massachusetts and Mount Pearl, Canada. In addition, all applicants will compete to be selected for fast-tracking to the Urban Resilience Challenge. Those selected will automatically advance to the semi-finalist stage and compete for a 1st Place prize of $75,000 and 2nd Place prize of $25,000.