The city of the future, the smart city, is ever approaching. But not all cities are apparently equally ready in their ability to adopt it. So what makes a city better placed to be ‘smart’?
ProptechOS recently compiled a study that examines three areas: Tech infrastructure and connectivity, green infrastructure, and the tech-drive job market, and using a number of subcategories within each, it aimed to determine which city ranks where. Drawing from a list of the ‘major’ European cities, it ranked each on a scale of 1-100 in the three categories. So, to draw some conclusion from its report, let’s look at its rankings…
10 – Helsinki, Finland: 52.2
Mainland Europe’s most northerly capital comes in at number 10, with Helsinki scoring 77, 62 and 19 in the respective categories. Finland consistently ranks high in the EU’s Digital Economy and Society Index (ranking 1st, 2nd and 1st in the past three years) and is well represented by a number of domestic tech titans like Nokia, who is an established name in mobile, fixed and Cloud networks. That, plus a number of other international tech companies with presence in the capital – Oracle, Amazon, IBM, Microsoft – lend to a pool of companies that contribute to a healthy amount of hiring in the city’s job market.
9 – Madrid, Spain: 54.3
The Spanish capital city scored 87, 54 and 22 to claim 9th place. Many of the big tech companies have invested heavily in Spain as a place to build their data centres. IBM is awaiting the opening of three data centres in Madrid and in nearby towns this year, Google has chosen Spain for its future Cloud computing projects, with a Google Cloud region set to be created in the capital and Meta is planning to invest in the country’s digital infrastructure with a new transatlantic cable, a €1bn new data centre and doubling of its office space in Madrid. This not only demonstrates the tech infrastructure being made available, but also the amount these companies plan to expand their presence there, meaning a tech-jobs hiring market that will continue to grow.
8 – Dublin, Ireland: 55.2
The emerald isle’s capital Dublin achieves 76, 63 and 27 to place it 8th on the list. The city has long been a hub of tech in the country, with Google having moved into its ‘Silicon docks’ as early as 2004. Having favourable tax systems, many major tech companies that deal with IoT – Oracle, HP, Intel, Microsoft – have a presence there, with Google operating its EMEA Headquarters from the city. Ireland as a whole has this year published a strategy to invest €100mn in public EV charging infrastructure over the next three years, a large sum of which Dublin, Ireland’s most populous area, will likely receive a lion’s share.
7 – Budapest, Hungary: 56.3
Breaking out into 7th place is Budapest, scoring 76, 63 and 27. Telecoms provider and an eminent company in 5G production, Huawei has been operating in Budapest for over 15 years, with its largest European logistics centre next to the capital. On a Uswitch report, the capital also ranks 10th in European capitals with highest EV charging density.
6 – Oslo, Norway: 56.4
The Scandinavian city ranks 1st in European capitals with highest EV charging density, with a whopping 5.47 charging points per km2 and 3.98 charging bays per 1,000 capita. The Norwegian Society of Graduate Technical and Scientific Professionals reported in June 2022 that 48% of Norwegian companies are in need of IT resources. This shortage of staff sees most qualified candidates overwhelmed with messages from recruiters, according to Birn & Partners’ Rune Buseth, contributing to a large number of tech jobs per 10,000 of the population.
5 – Lisbon, Portugal: 56.9
Pulling into 5th place is the Portuguese capital of Lisbon, achieving 78, 64 and 29. To start, it ranks 4th out of the 10 European capitals with the highest EV charging density. Plus, key government incentives, such as Startup Portugal and 200M has propelled Lisbon’s eminence as a location for start-ups and contributed to a migration, and creation of companies, in the city that lend to a buoyant job market in the tech sphere.
4 – Paris, France: 61.6
The city of lights leaps clear over Lisbon and secures 4th place with a whopping score of 91, 68 and 25. Paris has four airports and the city also has 1,663 green buildings registered on the GBIG database. Although Paris comes in at 4th, it scores steadily above average in most of the others on the list. The French city also includes the 6th highest number of free public Wi-Fi hotspots (10,663) in a boost to its internet connectivity capabilities, and the 4th highest number of IoT companies headquartered there (258).
3 – Berlin, Germany: 61.6
The German capital gets ahead of its competitors with a strong score of 82, 77 and 27 to place it 3rd. The German Deutsche Telekom is making plans to provide 99% 5G coverage in Germany by 2025, highlighting its positioning in 5G connectivity. It has 184 buildings with green certification, it’s 6th highest for EV charging density, and Germany’s IoT market revenue was projected to reach €1.31bn in 2022, making it the third largest in the world.
2 – Amsterdam, Netherlands: 66.9
The capital of the Netherlands is no newcomer to the tech scene, so perhaps it’s no surprise the city comes in at 2nd with 86, 87 and 27 respectively. The city is the European HQ for companies such as TCS and Cisco. It also ranks third in the EV charging density list
1 – London, UK: 73.7
Stealing first and leaping a near seven points ahead of the runner-up is the British city London, scoring 89, 95 and 36. London boasts six airports, which probably gained it a few extra points over its competitors, 3.17 charging bays per km2 (behind only Oslo), a supposed 4,945 buildings with green certifications, nine 5G towers and average broadband speeds are 82.7mbps. While it lagged behind on its tech-driven job market with 49,818 tech job vacancies on the market at time of the study, the scores for its technology and connectivity infrastructure, and on its green infrastructure helped put it ahead.
There’s also plenty of other IoT editorial at IoT Insider’s sister publication, Electronic Specifier. And you can always add to the discussion at our comments section below or on our LinkedIn page here.