Singapore, Stockholm and Seoul are the three top-ranked cities as per the Networked Society City Index presented by the Swedish telecommunications giant Ericsson and management consultancy Arthur D. Little.
These cities have been ranked according to ICT maturity and development and all three of them were successful in meeting many social, economic and environmental targets by making extensive investments in ICT.
Singapore demonstrated innovation in e-health, and has pioneered traffic-congestion management. Stockholm is using ICT to enable research collaboration and knowledge transfer and Seoul leverages ICT to realise green high-tech initiatives.
Ericsson says cities exhibiting a high level of information and communications technology maturity can better manage issues such as environmental management, infrastructure, public security, healthcare quality and education.
This report encourages the low-ranking cities to provide digital access and ICT training for the underprivileged parts of their populations in order to reduce the digital divide.
More than 60 per cent of the world's population will live in urban areas by 2030 and according to Ericsson, key decision makers can learn from the successes of top-performing cities in the Networked Society to ensure that this growth is sustainable.
The top-10-ranking cities according to the Networked Society City Index are: Singapore, Stockholm, Seoul, London, Paris, New York, Tokyo, Los Angeles, Shanghai and Beijing.
"Building a Networked Society is one of our time's great challenges for mankind. Although this analysis should be seen as a humble starting point to explore the link between ICT investments and sustainable development, it is our joint hope and intention that this report can serve as inspiration for cities that do not settle for the status quo," said Erik Almqvist, director at Arthur D. Little Nordic.
"By providing examples of how ICT can promote a city's growth, the index can be used to inspire dialog with decision makers to use ICT to enable organisational and societal success - from economic, environmental and social perspectives," said Erik Kruse, from the Networked Society lab at Ericsson.