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Thu 3 Oct 2019 12:52 PM

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Dubai and Abu Dhabi 'smartest' cities in region, according to IMD rankings

The top ten cities in the rankings were Singapore, Zurich, Oslo, Geneva, Copenhagen, Auckland, Taipei, Helsinki, Bilbao and Dusseldorf

Dubai and Abu Dhabi 'smartest' cities in region, according to IMD rankings

Dubai and Abu Dhabi came in first and second place in the region on the IMDB Smart City Index 2019, which ranks a total of 102 cities worldwide, it was announced on Thursday.

According to the rankings, Dubai came in 45th place globally, ahead of Paris, Chicago and Brussels.

Abu Dhabi, for its part, came in 65th place overall, ahead of both Tokyo and Osaka.

The top ten cities in the rankings were Singapore, Zurich, Oslo, Geneva, Copenhagen, Auckland, Taipei, Helsinki, Bilbao and Dusseldorf.

“Abu Dhabi and Dubai are two cities that stand out in the whole MENA region in terms of quality of technology and provision of social services to improve quality of life,” said Professor Arturo Bris, the director of the IMD World Competitiveness Centre.

“In the future, the focus of the two cities on city planning and design will continue to be a role model,” he added.

IMD noted that while there is no ‘one size fits all’ strategy, the top cities scored highly for structures and the manner in which services are made available for citizens, while technology scores varied.

The report also noted that concerns and aspirations of citizens vary depending on culture and socio-economic context.

Inhabitants of Chinese cities and Dubai, for example, were found to be more comfortable with the use of their personal data than those in Geneva, New York and Paris.

In some cases, ‘smart city’ growth was found to be hampered by the priorities of municipal authorities and cumbersome and unequal distribution of services.

“Smart cities are growing and blossoming in all parts of the world,” Bris said. “Economic realities cannot be ignored: cities in poorer countries face disadvantages, which will require specific actions to correct along the path towards smartness.”

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