Abu Dhabi, Dubai ranked smartest cities in Middle East

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Abu Dhabi and Dubai have emerged as the smartest cities in the region, with the UAE capital jumping 14 spots to rank 42nd globally in a new index.

Over the past 12 months, Abu Dhabi has made a significant improvement in the Institute for Management Development’s (IMD) 2020 Smart City Index, after having ranked 56th last year. Dubai, meanwhile, rose two places up to 43rd. The index ranks cities based on economic and technological data, as well as by their citizens’ perceptions of how “smart” their cities are.

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The IMD released the second edition of the index in collaboration with Singapore University for Technology and Design (SUTD) with key findings on how technology is playing a role in the Covid-19 era. Globally, Singapore, Helsinki and Zurich have come out on top in the index in a year that saw many European cities fall in the rankings.

According to the IESE Cities in Motion Index, New York, London and Paris are the three top ranking smart cities in the world. Hundreds of citizens from 109 countries were surveyed and asked questions on the technological provisions of their city across five key areas: Health and safety, mobility, activities, opportunities and governance. Reflected in this year’s rankings is that cities have ever differing approaches to technology as managing the pandemic has become increasingly important in local politics.

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