Adelaide makes world's top 7 intelligent cities

Last updated 01 Dec, 2021

Adelaide has been recognised by global think tank The Intelligent Community Forum (ICF) as one of the top 7 intelligent communities in the world’s top smart cities.

In October last year, Adelaide won its spot among ICF’s ‘Smart21’ as the first step to greater recognition as an Intelligent Community. Adelaide is positioned well in the smart city space on the back of the world-leading Ten Gigabit Adelaide fibre optic network and for embedding smart technology into the city’s infrastructure.

Other cities that made the top 7 include Sunshine Coast, Hamilton and Markham (Canada) Tallinn, (Estonia) and Hudson and Westerville in Ohio, USA.

Each of the Smart21 Communities demonstrated how their workforce’s development, innovation ecosystem, digital inclusion, engagement and sustainability, were all underpinned by digital connectivity as the key enabler of economic growth. Examples of how the City of Adelaide and its community are using and leveraging digital connectivity for sustainable growth were a central aspect of the City of Adelaide’s submission.

The recognition is about much more than being a smart city. The seven cities all demonstrate evidence of strong government and business and community collaboration. The next step in the Intelligent Community awards cycle is the selection of the world leader and is announced in June this year.

Lord Mayor Sandy Verschoor said it was a huge honour to be recognised in the top 7.

“For over a decade, we have been strategically investing in projects which now position Adelaide as the most connected city in Australia. The cornerstone of this achievement is Ten Gigabit Adelaide – our new, Australian first, ten gigabit per-second data network,” said the Lord Mayor.

“As a city, we’ve built active and collaborative relationships across all levels of government, universities, and the private sector. This has supported innovation and entrepreneurship, fuelling investment and economic growth.

“As we look to finalise our 2020 – 2024 Strategic Plan we’ll continue to focus on our smart city agenda, on creating even greater digital capabilities and connectivity and ensuring we’re recognised as an affordable and innovative place to do business.”

The ICF is non-profit policy research organisation, focusing on job creation and economic development in the broadband economy. It highlights the economic effects of broadband, community-based best practices, through an annual Intelligent Community Awards program. The ICF have been assessing cities and regions around the world against key indicators since 2004. City of Adelaide has been listed as a Smart21 for the past 3 years and this year is the first time it has gained Top7 status, a significant achievement on the global stage.

ICF uses a rigorous analytic method to select the Top7. Each Smart21 Community is invited to complete a detailed questionnaire based on ICF's Intelligent Community Indicators. An international academic team of Analysts reviews the questionnaires, scores each one on dozens of factors, and produces a quantitative ranking of the candidates. The seven highest ranking candidates become ICF's Top7 Intelligent Communities. The Top7 represent models of economic and social transformation in the 21st Century. They are not the most advanced technology centres, the most wired cities or the fastest growing economies in the world. Instead, each city exemplifies best practices in broadband deployment and use, workforce development, innovation, digital inclusion and advocacy that offer lessons to regions, cities, towns and villages around the world. They are charting new paths to lasting prosperity for their citizens, businesses and institutions.