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CISCO to create an urban innovation center in Barcelona

Within the framework of the Metropolis 2009-2011 Action Plan, Commission 5 “Partnership for Urban Innovation” was established with the goal of fostering innovation in cities, in close collaboration with the private sector and other interested institutions.

Boosting partnerships is a key element in projects in which Metropolis participates. In this regard, Metropolis signed a collaboration agreement with CISCO two years ago to analyze the viability of creating ICT-based urban innovation centers.

Over the past two years Metropolis has facilitated the collaboration between CISCO and Barcelona City Council to create an innovation center in the city. The result of this ongoing work between the parties has seen CISCO and City Council sign an agreement to make Barcelona a global reference point in sustainable urban development and economic growth.

The collaboration agreement forms part of the Smart & Connected Communities initiative, aimed at rolling out reference technology architecture for urban platforms.

This urban platform will comprise a network infrastructure present in the city’s streets and public spaces to which multiple devices like sensors, information points and mobile devices can be connected. The network will enable an environment with an intensive use of new technologies that will connect many fields including logistics, property, security, basic services, knowledge, health, sport and the public administration.

By getting behind this initiative it is expected that joint telecommunications costs in Barcelona will fall by around 30% and lead to 1,000 new jobs in the medium term. The new center will also connect Barcelona with other technology innovation centers around the world, making it possible to export the experience to other cities.

This is the first center for the dissemination of new technologies in the city, a pilot project on city management know-how where private/public collaboration is crucial to its viability.

Metropolis is open to the creation of other innovation centers in different cities, in collaboration with various private partners. And it is committed to promoting and exporting these experiences to all of the Association’s members.

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