Swedish solutions for smart city strategy in India

As countries like India urbanise at rapid-fire pace, they may need a little help from more developed friends around the world when it comes to establishing and implementing sustainable smart city solutions. Here’s where Sweden steps in. The Scandinavian country is partnering with India to develop a plan to promote sustainable and green-friendly public transportation solutions, making cities across India smarter thanks to Swedish technologies. As a global leader in waste management, urban mobility solutions, smart parking systems, air filtration, real-time information systems, and command and control systems, Sweden is honing in on these skills and integrating them into smart city plans across India. Below, we’ll look at a few other ways Sweden plans to make India’s sprawling cities smarter. — Philippe Leonard


Advancing India’s Technology

For India’s smart city development, some of the key target areas include enhancing basic infrastructure, improving public transportation and solid waste management, and making cities more digitalized. The city of Pune in the western Indian state of Maharashtra, for example, is one of 100 cities across the country that will benefit from Swedish technology and these smart city initiatives. One of the first plans underway that will improve public transportation: the introduction of 55 buses in Nagpur—the third largest city in the state—which will run on ethanol thanks to Swedish automotive manufacturer, Scania.

Here are a few other benefits from the partnership:

-Recycled fuel: Sweden plans to assist with the production of bio-gas from converted solid and liquid municipal waste, transforming it into usable vehicle fuel. 

-Digital upgrade: Sweden will offer the digital tools necessary to help cities in India with the urban planning process, as well as provide digital technologies and resources to help governments run more efficiently.

-Open data for citizens: As the staple of smart city development, open data gives citizens the tools to access public information more easily. In addition, open data allows for intelligent transport systems and telemedicine programmes, as well as government management of water and electricity usage. 

-Voice for the people: To make these smart city solutions successful ones, the Swedish Minister for Housing, Urban Development and Information Technology, Mehmet Kaplan, plans to involve citizens, ensuring their voices and demands are heard. “Besides the participation of architects, town planners and environmentalists, people too must be involved, they must decide what they want,” Kaplan explained.  

Sweden is just one of a handful of countries—along with Japan, Holland and Canada—who are looking to India as the next step for smart city development, sharing their knowledge and technology to shape the future of the developing nation.