How are Italian cities changing after the pandemic? New values and behaviours, rethinking places and ways of working, recovering a sense of community: the lockdown experience and the impact of Covid have changed the priorities of Italians, with considerable impacts on cities and workers. These are the highlights of the sixth edition of EY's Smart City Index, which has become the Human Smart City Index, integrating indicators related to ecological behaviour, citizens' digital skills and social inclusion. EY Human Smart City Index 2022 ranks Italian cities according to their people-friendly transformation process, including digital transition, ecology and social inclusion.

By cross-referencing the data, investments and initiatives of cities, which measure the extent to which they are ready to redesign spaces and times around people's needs (readiness), with the behaviour of citizens on the three strategic axes of digital transition, ecological transition and social inclusion, a ranking is drawn up that classifies Italian cities on the basis of their transformation process into people-friendly cities.

What is the snapshot of the Italian urban ecosystem? The context does not yet seem to be mature, but it is in full evolution. It is clear that the hyper-technological metropolis model is losing momentum, in favour of the more humane examples of small and medium-sized cities, where social relations are closer and sustainable behaviour less complicated.​

How are Italian cities changing?
The hyper-technological metropolis model is losing momentum in favour of more humane examples of small and medium-sized cities, with closer social relations

As far as companies are concerned, their contribution to the sustainability of the urban environment becomes crucial: living in a more people-friendly city can be an important part of human capital management. The demand for people-friendly cities is emerging very strongly, and companies are also bound to understand and manage the impact of new urban trends on their employees: smart working, a new vision of work and values, is the most obvious part of this, but the increased attention to the environment, the desire for more sustainable travel, and a better work-life balance are irreversible trends.  

The analysis shows that industries such as Technology & Telco, Automotive Manufacturing, Medical Devices, Pharmaceuticals and Media & Entertainment, which are mostly concentrated in Milan, Turin, Rome, Bologna and Emilia, are more attentive to 'human' aspects and offer workers more people-friendly urban and living contexts, as opposed to industries - such as Agrifood and Retail Food - which suffer from a certain concentration in the more rural areas of the country.

In this year's ranking, Milan is confirmed in first place, with digital transition as its greatest strength both in infrastructure (ultra-broadband, 5G and IoT) and in citizens' skills and use of online services. It is followed by Bologna, thanks to its supremacy in terms of social inclusion, and Turin, especially for its decisive step in ecological transition. Rome is twelfth and gives up five positions compared to the 2020 ranking. What penalises it is, above all, a marked delay in the ecological transition process. Among the 40 cities in the South, only three metropolitan cities are in the first tier: Cagliari, Naples and Bari. Conversely, in the North, of the 47 cities, 29 are in the first tier of the ranking and only 6 in the third tier. In the Centre, however, the situation appears more balanced: 5 cities are in the first tier, 12 in the second and 5 in the third.

The size of cities has always been a determining variable in smart city implementation and this year, too, metropolitan cities prevail over medium and small centres.

Cities with high readiness scores and low behaviour scores invest and develop initiatives but struggle to involve citizens and have so far achieved a response that is far less than their efforts. These are southern metropolises that have invested a lot thanks to structural funds but have not yet produced tangible results. ​



PNRR and Smart City: an opportunity not to be missedPNRR and Smart City: an opportunity not to be missedGP0|#1b4ed451-b5cd-4008-ac84-85dff216062e;L0|#01b4ed451-b5cd-4008-ac84-85dff216062e|Smart City;GTSet|#731c59c8-4118-4f4c-8ddc-7170dc5cfcbd7/31/2022 10:00:00 PM 6:48:24 AM038373About News Open Innovation Contact us Login operatore Access Arca Customers Access Linear Customers Access UnipolSai Customers single cars Access UnipolSai Customers aspx18564htmlFalseaspx<img alt="" src="/en/PublishingImages/Smart%20City.jpg" style="BORDER:0px solid;" />4 minThree Missions of the PNRR provide funds and specific interventions to manage resources and services in an optimised way