Smart cities Scotland blueprint launch

September 28, 2016


Launched at the SCDI Productive Places Conference in Glasgow by Glasgow City Council Deputy Leader Cllr Archie Graham, the Blueprint has been developed by the Alliance partners, Transport Scotland and Scottish Enterprise.

Speaking at the conference, Cllr Graham said:

“Since the launch of Smart Cities Scotland in October 2015, Scotland’s cities have made considerable progress in adopting smart technologies – using data as an asset, advancing citizen engagement, embracing innovation and establishing new forms of collaboration across the public, private and tertiary sectors.

“These methods are being used to make services more effective and to make Scottish cities more appealing to investors, residents, visitors and the business community.

“The Smart Cities Scotland Blueprint sets out the opportunities cities can use to advance smart cities initiatives, and to develop a programme of smart cities projects.

“Produced in collaboration with all seven Scottish cities, the Scottish Government and Scottish Enterprise, the Blueprint outlines the long-term strategic focus for our Smart Cities Scotland activity. It builds upon the Alliance’s other key priority work streams of investment promotion, hydrogen, low carbon and the 8th City Programme.

“All of this is supported by millions of pounds of investment by the Alliance partners that will ensure our cities make the most of the economic benefits derived from adopting smarter, new technologies to accelerate and transform the delivery of city services.”

Dr. David Beeton, managing director of Urban Foresight and compiler of the Smart Cities Scotland Blueprint, said:

“Having worked with cities around the world, it is clear that Scotland’s cities are ideally placed to drive forward their ambitions to become smarter and more sustainable. The Blueprint builds on the frameworks for collaboration provided by the Scottish Cities Alliance and establishes a joined-up approach to make Scotland an even better place to live and a more prosperous and successful country.”

A recent report published by the innovation charity Nesta, City Initiatives for Technology, Innovation and Entrepreneurship (CITIE): The Scotland Analysis reveals that major investments and initiatives, secured and developed by the Scottish Cities Alliance, have helped Scottish cities to perform well, with Edinburgh and Glasgow already displaying performance levels to rival leading cities from the CITIE global analysis.

Cllr Andrew Burns, chair of the Scottish Cities Alliance, said:

“We welcome the CITIE Scotland report which highlights that Scotland’s cities as a group are performing well, and even outperforming our European peers across six of CITIE’s nine policy roles, particularly in openness and leadership.

“The report highlights that digital technologies have been key to unlocking faster economic growth by 2.3% in real terms, and this underlines the vital role the Alliances’ Smart Cities Scotland Programme, including the “Scotland’s 8th City – the Smart City” project, will play in developing the new capabilities, technologies and processes that will drive the future success of Scotland’s city economies.

“The Alliance will work together to take forward some of the key recommendations of the report as we progress the activity in the Blueprint, launched today.”

David Altabev, senior programme manager for government innovation at Nesta, said:

“This report demonstrates that innovation and entrepreneurship have never been more crucial qualities in helping secure the long-term sustainable prosperity of Scottish cities, in creating grass roots local employment opportunities, in providing a fertile innovation ground, and for acting as an idea generation pool to help local governments solve some of their most complex urban challenges.

“With smart policy tweaks that are mindful of the start-up and innovation ecosystem, we will realise an important multiplier effect that can set the Scottish cities on a path towards enduring prosperity.”



The Scottish Cities Alliance is a unique collaboration of Scotland’s seven cities (Aberdeen, Dundee, Edinburgh, Glasgow, Inverness, Perth and Stirling) and the Scottish Government working together to deliver economic growth. The Alliance aims to attract external investment, stimulate economic activity and create new jobs and business opportunities.

The body’s ambitious plans range over the short, medium and long term to create the conditions to deliver expansion, by strategically focusing on infrastructure, low carbon and Smart Cities initiatives, aligned to City Investment Plans. By working together Scotland’s cities can create projects of scale and achieve an economically stronger future for Scotland.


Follow Scottish Cities Alliance on Twitter @scottishcities or connect with us on LinkedIn.

About Urban Foresight

Urban Foresight is a strategy and innovation consultancy focused on shaping the smart cities of the future, where transport, energy, environmental and healthcare systems are much more interconnected. Headquartered in the UK, but working globally, we develop strategies and projects for businesses, cities and national governments. As a mission-driven business with commitments to innovation and sustainable development, we work to make cities more sustainable, resilient and intelligently responsive to the needs of citizens. @UrbanForesight


CITIE is a collaboration between Nesta, Accenture and the Future Cities Catapult. It is a framework which aims to help city leaders around the world understand how they can create the best environment for entrepreneurship and innovation.

The tool identifies nine roles that a city can play to support innovation and entrepreneurship; from regulator and customer, to host and connector. Cities are then assessed to see how well they played these roles by measuring the extent to which they have implemented 36 different policy levers which collectively amount to best practice. Over 40 global cities have been analysed using the framework to date and you can view their diagnostics on the CITIE website; I @citieinfo

About Nesta

Nesta is the UK’s innovation foundation. We help people and organisations bring great ideas to life. We do this by providing investments and grants and mobilising research, networks and skills. We are an independent charity and our work is enabled by an endowment from the National Lottery. Nesta is a registered charity in England and Wales 1144091 and Scotland SC042833. | @nesta_uk