Future-proofing Cities in a Post-pandemic World with Deloitte


This article focuses on how cities can build resiliency in public health systems, government operations, and other city domains by focusing on four key capabilities— nimbleness, scalability, stability, and optionality. These recommendations are informed by a global survey of 167 cities conducted as part of the Smart City Solutions for a Riskier World research study to identify challenges and track progress made by cities in each of the key capabilities of resiliency.

ESI Thoughtlab, in collaboration with a coalition of business, government, and academic leaders, including Deloitte, surveyed 167 cities globally to understand their progress on UN Sustainable Development Goals, how they coped with the pandemic, and how are they leveraging digital technologies, data, and other innovative solutions to drive progress in the post pandemic era.

The survey was conducted between August and November 2020. It covered cities across 82 countries with varying income levels and population sizes. The survey also classified cities into three stages of smart city maturity—beginner, intermediate, and leader—based on their progress in harnessing technology and data across various urban domains and their ability to foster citizen and stakeholder engagement. Based on the survey results, 29% of cities were classified as beginner, 49% as intermediate, and 22% as smart city leaders.