Smart Cities and data-driven policy

During the inspiration moment around 'City of Things' (VLAIO), CityD delivered a keynote on 'The future of data-driven policy'. Data is the power source for Smart Cities, but which data is important and how should it be collected? Mathias Declerck, core reinforcement expert at CityD, explains which principles Smart Cities should take into account and what we can learn from pioneers such as Barcelona, Singapore or Toronto.


The importance of data

Every city or municipality, small or large, cannot escape the trend of digitalization. Digitalization and the use of technology involves data. Data is the power source for Smart Cities. But collecting data does not make a city smart. Possibly not even a little smarter. Why not? The answer was explained in detail by Mathias Declerck during the inspiration moment of City of Things.

Under the heading 'City of Things – Smart Economy', VLAIO has supported various initiatives in recent years. CityD was involved in a number of these projects and was therefore able to open the closing event with a keynote on 'The future of data-driven policy'.


Follow the evolution

With the exception of a few major cities, Flemish cities and municipalities are still in their infancy in the evolution towards a successful Smart City. Initiated by a number of projects via Flanders or the provinces, here and there the first (baby) steps are being taken. These are usually solitary initiatives. However, the concept of a Smart City has already been growing for several decades. These solitary actions too often ignore the fundamentals. Did you know, for example, that experts are already talking about Smart City 1.0, 2.0 and 3.0? Even 4.0 is on its way. That evolution did not happen overnight. Cities all over the world have been experimenting and learning for decades. It may be major cities such as Barcelona, Singapore, Toronto or Helsinki that are pioneering. Nevertheless, the learnings and the resulting principles to be monitored are important for all municipalities regardless of the scale.

We already reveal some important guidelines:
  • Data is a means, not an end
  • First set clear goals and only then collect data; not the other way around
  • The evolution towards a Smart City is a participatory process. Increasing the comfort for residents and visitors is important.

The focus is on an integrated approach, clear objectives and the right expertise to translate the collected data into actions or adjustments. A data-driven policy is therefore only part of the evolution towards smarter cities or municipalities, but a very important one!

Would you like to know more about the data-driven policy (presentation in Dutch)?


Are you looking for insights, support or data processing? Would you like to know more about our City Marketing and Centre Management pillar? Would you like support from DataD's experts for market research & analysis, feasibility & needs research, market strategy & marketing advice? Contact us for a no-obligation (digital) appointment! The CityD-WES team is happy to assist you.


Summer networking: how to build strong business park associations together!

Business park associations bring many benefits both to local governments and companies. How to achieve this and how to create a business park association? CityD is happy to help you! Start with networking this summer! We wish you a happy summer and look forward to working together on a strong and connected business park! ☀️

We dive into the summer independently (of the weather!)

Will we have a typical Belgian summer or will we be able to enjoy sun and beach? We cannot answer that, but fortunately we can answer other research questions. With our brands DataD and CityD, we will gladly get to work for you, during or after the summer. We wish you happy holidays!

Area management in Houthalen-Helchteren

For the Europark and Centrum-Zuid business parks, CityD organised two workshops in Houthalen-Helchteren. Based on the input from the workshops, area-specific actions are drawn up. The actions are worked out together with and for the entrepreneurs, because area management on a business park is team work.

CityD member of Tungri Awards jury in Tongeren

Tongeren puts the spotlights on local entrepreneurs and honours them for their work and commitment. CityD, which provides advisory support to the local economy department, is also member of the jury. The Tungri Awards will be granted on October 24, 2024. Nominating a business for any of the four categories is still possible until July 31.

Press launch City marketing Eeklo

The city marketing plan for Eeklo was presented to the press. Through a participative process, CityD and Supermoon developed a supported vision of Eeklo's identity, determined the brand essence and positioning, and worked out promotional actions. Eeklo is a city on the move and Eeklo moves you!

Looking for a business park manager? Then you've come to the right place at CityD!

A sustainable and future-proof business park? The focus is not only on the use of the plots, but also on the possible synergies between the companies themselves. So an overall approach with one connecting force: the business park manager. CityD's business park manager is the right choice!

Willebroek, where CityD enhances the image quality of the commercial core and strengthens cooperation between traders

Willebroek wants to strengthen its commercial core and improve cooperation between all traders. CityD was commissioned to make agreements on image quality and appearance of the city centre and will work out connecting actions with the traders, across language and origin boundaries.

Reallocation Day (12.05.2024) highlights importance of reallocation as the way forward

CityD carries out reallocation studies through a participatory process, together with the client, stakeholders, experts and architect. A new future for existing buildings, that's what we believe in!

CityD analyses the spatial and economic evolution of publicly accessible functions

VLAIO (the Flemish Innovation & Entrepreneurship Agency) builds the lively centres of the future. What policy is needed around public-oriented functions to build resilient commercial and providing centres? CityD analyses the public-oriented offer, tests existing policy, examines developments and formulates recommendations.

CityD partners on "Dag voor de Binnenstad"(Inner-city day) and "Week van de Samenwerking" (Cooperation Week)

On April 11 2024, Lier, Ede and Arnhem (the Netherlands) were chosen as winners of 'Meest Inspirerende Binnenstadsproject' (Most Inspiring Inner-city Project) during the Inner-city Day. CityD is a jury member in the election and also followed the 'Week van de Samenwerking' (Cooperation Week), two initiatives of the Platform Binnenstadsmanagement. The CityD pillars 'Centre Management & City Marketing' and 'Trade & Hotel catering industry' are perfectly in line with this.

CityD testifies that Working Together Works during the event "West-Vlaamse Winkelier"

During the event West-Vlaamse Winkelier (West Flemish shopkeeper), CityD delivered the keynote 'Working together Works', in which they called upon traders to cooperate more. The evening was organised around the initiative 'de Winkelsterren van je buurt' (Your neighbourhood's Shopping Stars). CityD guided traders' associations, cities and municipalities in setting up and rolling out their action.

The importance of supra-local allocation plans and the CityD support on request of VLAIO

How can local authorities strike a balance between the growing demand for space on business parks and the need for sustainable use? The call launched by VLAIO (The Flemish Agency for Innovation and Entrepreneurship) to support supra-local allocation policies offers an answer. CityD is part of the consortium that will be assisting local authorities with this and is happy to help you with this exciting task.

Support for traders in Heist-op-den-Berg via digital gift voucher and new branding

Being a local economy consultant, CityD has been supporting Heist-op-den-Berg in terms of centre management since early 2022. An annual action plan and personal guidance are the basis for successful trade in the centre and the surrounding areas. The Heistbon was launched and shopping was rebranded.

Strengthening the shopping landscape in Lommel thanks to new Jumbo

CityD conducted additional research regarding the food sector in Lommel. The reason was the opening of a branch of supermarket Jumbo. A screening showed why a supermarket at this particular location could be an added value for the nearby town centre, but especially for the inhabitants of Lommel and suburbs.

Opinion: boosting entrepreneurship with 'Win Your Business' competitions

Successful "win your business" competitions give start-ups a big financial boost or even premises for free for a year. What lies behind the success of these promotions? Why is personal coaching necessary? Read the opinion piece by Jan Boots, CEO of CityD-WES

CityD-WES reflects on 2023 and looks forward to 2024

In 2023 we will further roll out our CityD and DataD brands. CityD strengthens local and regional dynamics. DataD is an expert in market research & marketing strategy. 2023 was a busy year and in 2024 will continue to assist companies, organizations and governments in their growth and development.

CityD coaches traders' association Izegem with successful sticker campaign

CityD coached traders in Izegem with a successful sticker campaign: 100 participating merchants, 250,000 stickers and 775 full sticker books. Traders were assisted with the practical implementation, posts on social media and inspired to develop their own initiatives.

CityD and Idea investigate the spatial evolution of publicly accessible functions in Flanders

CityD advises on the tension between space and function. A bustling core requires transition, spatial organisation and good accessibility to be successful and future-proof. CityD investigates the spatial evolution of publicly accessible functions in Flanders.

Entrepreneurship, core strengthening and retail policy prevail at CityD

CityD's CEO Jan Boots was a guest at events and seminars on entrepreneurship, core strengthening and retail policy. These included the Entrepreneurship Summit of Minister Jo Brouns and VLAIO, the BSM in Turnhout and the Q&A session at Unizo Limburg with ministers Peeters and Brouns.

Promotional contribution from traders Peer results in other attractive promotions

For years the trade association in Peer HHOP! has been the driving force for activities that benefit the commercial core. A promotional contribution has been introduced since this year (until 2025). This results in attractive additional promotions. CityD colleague Silvie Vandewijer ensures that everything runs smoothly.

Sports infrastructure needs assessment study for Ninove

CityD carried out a needs assessment study on sports infrastructure on behalf of the city of Ninove. What sports facilities are available and which ones are needed? Through a vision of the future and various scenarios, Ninove can now make the right policy choices in the field of sports infrastructure.

Throwback to international training programmes

For more than 35 years, international training programmes on tourism were organized in our office in Bruges for organizations in developing countries (Asia, Africa and Latin America). After almost 30 years, the Thai Wew and Puk return to Bruges. It was a happy reunion!

Final phase vision formulation for Houthalen-Helchteren and Heusden-Zolder area management

Developing liveable and accessible industrial estates with local companies. That is the aim of the study that was developed within the complex North-South Limburg project. CityD is part of the consortium that - now that the vision has been drawn up - will further be responsible for its realization.

Reallocation St. Joseph's Church Roeselare ensures positive neighbourhood dynamics

Nearly 1800 Roman Catholic churches in Flanders, but barely 5% of the inhabitants visit them. Governments are looking for re-use options for this valuable heritage. VOKA Vastgoed West and East Flanders and our colleague Pascal Steeland (CityD-WES) visited St. Joseph's Church in Roeselare.

CityD informs entrepreneurs about the transition of industrial estates via Voka Limburg

Voka Limburg started a platform for local economy and invited CityD to explain the transition within industrial estates. The area management in central Limburg is an excellent example, because all aspects are covered. Our experts are also happy to assist you with transition issues.

CityD benchmarks castle restaurants for Visit Flanders

The rich heritage tradition in Flanders presents governments with the challenge of finding a new use for that heritage. Are castle restaurants a good option for castles? CityD conducted a benchmark at home and abroad that undoubtedly provides interesting insights.

CityD guides Oudsbergen in city marketing

City marketing literally means 'promoting a city'. In Oudsbergen, CityD provided an attractive positioning with an emphasis on a powerful, connecting identity. Other cities and municipalities went through a city marketing and centre management process with us.

Interweaving is indispensable in spatial economics and area development

At CityD we help governments develop a policy vision for the economy tailored to the city, region or industrial estate. Interweaving ensures work locations that take the residential fabric into account. Read more about our projects, available toolboxes and a possible plan of action.

From commercial core to lively core in Tongeren

The city of Tongeren recently presented the spatial implementation draft plan (RUP) 'Centrum II'.

close

{{ popup_title }}

{{ popup_close_text }}

x