A Smart Foundation for Smart Cities

Resources to help design people-friendly towns

6 June 2014

The recent launch of the IEEE Smart Cities Initiative gives IEEE members the opportunity to help build a new urban landscape. Perhaps the best place to go for information is the initiative’s website.


At the Smart Cities Web portal, you can find news about the latest IEEE smart-city activities, articles from IEEE publications and elsewhere, information about conferences and events, videos, and useful links.

There you can also learn how IEEE is collaborating with cities that already have a plan to become smarter. IEEE experts stand ready to discuss the technology the cities need and to offer advice on dealing with privacy and other societal issues. They are also working with local universities on developing courses and workshops, conferences, and other events needed to train engineering students and others to sustain their new urban landscape.

Smartening up a city’s aging power grid to handle increasing loads is key. The Web portal already has several articles and documents that discuss what’s needed, including “The Relationship Between Smart Grids and Smart Cities” by Ken Geisle, vice president of strategy for Siemens Smart Grid, in Minneapolis.


Several IEEE publications have covered various aspects of building a smart city. The June 2013 issue of IEEE Communications Magazine was devoted to the topic. Several articles focused on information and communications technologies for smart-city business models, while other articles discussed ways to protect citizens’ privacy, the power of crowd-sourced data, and big-data mining approaches.

IEEE Internet Computing devoted its November/December issue to smart cities. It looked at cutting-edge research, including managing and interpreting information from social media, citywide sensing for traffic control, and driver behavior based on information coming from the Internet.

You also might want to check the IEEE Xplore Digital Library for articles from other publications including China Communications, IEEE Computer, IEEE Network, and IEEE Vehicular Technology Magazine.


IEEE.tv has several videos on smart cities. Two are from the IEEE Future Directions Committee, the organization’s R&D arm, which oversees the Smart Cities initiative. In one video, Roberto Saracco, chair of the committee, discusses what makes a city smart. Other videos include presentations given at an IEEE France Section meeting (in French).


If you’re involved in R&D, planning, or implementation of applications for more intelligent cities, consider joining IEEE’s Smart Cities Technical Community. Joining is free, and members receive announcements of upcoming conferences, links to news articles, and other information to keep them abreast of developments in the field.

IEEE membership offers a wide range of benefits and opportunities for those who share a common interest in technology. If you are not already a member, consider joining IEEE and becoming part of a worldwide network of more than 400,000 students and professionals.

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