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Qiu Baoxing: Smart Cities Should Focus on Public Goods

Date: 2017-03-30
At the Smart City Development Forum organized by China Association for Science and Technology on March 28, Qiu Baoxing, Counsellor of the State Council and the Chairman of the Chinese Society for Urban Studies, made a keynote speech on smart city planning and green city development. He said that the design of smart cities should focus on public goods. The government should do what it should do. Science and technology should be applied in a smart way to promote urban development.

The idea of smart cities has gained worldwide attention. Yet there are still many misunderstandings about smart cities. 
 

 
Smart City Development Forum

Qiu said there are three misunderstandings about smart city development. First, confusions about the means and goals of smart cities. Second, confusions about the building of the government itself and its service ability. Third, confusions about commercial goods and public goods.

“Public goods” smart cities can be divided into several categories: energy conserving and emission reducing, disaster mitigating and preventing, government management and performance-based, and urban diseases curing. Among all these categories, the energy conservation and emission reduction type should be the predominant one for building eco-friendly cities.

What is an energy conserving and emission reducing smart city? First, the city must be diagnosed for ecological upgrading. Second, smart means should be applied in transport, taxation and energy. Air pollution should also be analyzed. The Internet should be used for green buildings and communities. “Big data will be an effective way for city diagnosis, which is a necessary step for designing eco-friendly and smart cities,” said Qiu. Data can be mined using software so as to come up with targeted solutions.

Qiu said green development is about making the transition from industrial civilization to eco-civilization. Cloud computing, the Internet of Things and other technologies should be matched with distributed energy and water pollution management. The best hardware and software should be combined to make CBD a model of technological innovation and efficient government services.

Now there are over 1,200 smart city programs implemented worldwide. China is still at the initial stage of smart city promotion. According to the list published by the Ministry of Housing and Urban-Rural Development, China has close to 300 smart city pilot programs.