Culture & Society Czech Republic News

Prague ranked 19th ‘smartest’ city in the world

Prague, Czech Republic – Prague has been ranked among the 20 ‘smartest’ cities in the world, according to the IMD World Competitiveness Center’s Smart City Observatory.

Singapore, Zurich and Oslo top Smart City Index 2019

Compiled by the IMD in partnership with Singapore University of Technology and Design (SUTD), the Smart City Index 2019 is the first edition of its kind, and ranks 102 cities in the world.

“Being a globally-recognized ‘smart’ city is now critical for attracting investment and talent, creating a potential virtuous circle in favour of an advanced group of cities”, the authors point out. But although “smart cities are growing and blossoming in all parts of the world […] economic realities cannot be ignored: cities in poorer countries face disadvantages”, stresses Arturo Bris, director of the IMD World Competitiveness Center.

Contrary to most of the other indices that remain “technologic-centric”, the IMD ranking aims to assess “the ‘why’ which underpins any strategy to make a city smarter, or to build one from scratch”, including by relying on the perceptions of the local residents, who were asked to name the most pressing issues facing the city they live or work in.

Singapore topped the ranking to be crowned the ‘smartest’ city in the world, according to the index, followed by Zurich, Oslo, Geneva and Copenhagen.

Affordable housing, road congestion and corruption were identified as the three most pressing issues by Prague residents. Source: IMD Smart City Index

Prague ranked “smartest” city in Central and Eastern Europe

The rest of the top 10 is made up of Auckland, Taipei, Helsinki, Bilbao and Dusseldorf.

At the 19th place worldwide, Prague is the first Central and Eastern European city of the ranking, well ahead of Warsaw (61st), Krakow (69th), Budapest (83rd), Bratislava (84th), Bucharest (85th) or Sofia (89th).

World metropolises show varying degrees of “smartness”, with London coming in at the 20th position, Washington and New York trailing slightly behind at the 31st and 38th place respectively. Berlin comes right after (39th), ahead of the likes of Paris (51st), Beijing (60th), Brussels (64th), Moscow (72nd) or Bangkok (75th).

Curious to know if your city made it to the ranking? You can check out the complete results right here.

Headed by Kafkadesk's chief-editor Jules Eisenchteter, our Prague office gathers over half a dozen reporters, editors and contributors, as well as our social media team. It covers everything Czech and Slovak-related, and oversees operations from our other Central European desks in Krakow and Budapest.