3Q 2021

Ecosystem Strategy for Smart Cities: Building a Sustainability Advantage

The importance of cities in meeting global climate targets is undisputed. Many cities already have plans to be carbon neutral or zero-carbon cities by 2050 or earlier. Though such commitments may be impressive, making them a reality requires new approaches to urban infrastructure and services enabled by new energy systems, building and transportation technologies, and digital tools. This effort will likely also require new platforms that can support collaboration between city departments, businesses, and citizens in the transformation to a zero-carbon economy.

In addition to developing practical roadmaps to decarbonization, cities are prioritizing other environmental challenges that are increasing because of global warming, including water and air quality issues, flooding, urban overheating, and the loss of natural diversity. United Nations (UN) Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) are being adapted as a framework for many cities and are being enhanced by new concepts such as the 15-minute city. These developments provide new points of engagement for city technology and service providers that can support cities through a combination of specific solutions and strategic alignment to city priorities.

This Guidehouse Insights report examines the opportunities and challenges of the smart city market and evolving ecosystem strategies. The report highlights the evolution of sustainable city strategies and sustainability strategies by sector and offers market accelerators and inhibitors. In addition, the report provides recommendations for technology providers, service partners, and other stakeholders.

Pages 17
Tables | Charts | Figures 5
  • What are the emerging trends in sustainable cities?
  • What are the key policy and design innovations?
  • How are sustainability strategies aligned with other city priorities?
  • What are the focus areas for sustainability investment?
  • How are different sectors addressing sustainability challenges and opportunities?
  • What are the main supplier opportunities and challenges?
  • Municipalities
  • State and regional government
  • City service providers
  • Smart city solutions providers
  • IoT and city platform vendors
  • IT, networking, and telecommunications vendors
  • Transportation and mobility providers
  • Energy management hardware and software vendors
  • Utilities
  • Government agencies
  • Investor community


Executive Summary

The Evolution of Sustainable City Strategies

Global Innovations in City Sustainability

Focus Areas for City Sustainability Innovation

Market Spotlight: Smart City Energy

Evolving Sustainability Strategies by Sector

Supplier Ecosystem Perspective

Market Accelerators and Inhibitors


Key Recommendations

Additional Resources, Acronyms, and Contact

  • Global Innovations in City Sustainability
  • Annual Smart City Revenue by Region, World Markets: 2021-2030
  • Evolving Sustainability Strategies by Sector
  • Supplier Ecosystem Perspective
  • Market Accelerators and Inhibitors