Our Hong Kong-based columnist is Chairman, CEO and Chief Cybertect of James Law Cybertecture
The single most impactful human led phenomenon of the 21st century has been the continuing and accelerating rate of urbanisation.
By James Law
By 2015, more than half of humanity is already residing in cities, and this trend continues to increase based on an undercurrent of an increasing rate of population growth. It is predicted that by the end of the middle of the century, there will be more people living in cities than there is currently all over the planet.
This is why I have started a new enterprise called Cybertecture X. Cybertecture X is a global entity focused on the design, planning and construction of smart cities around the world. Cybertecture X will develop new designs, new technologies and new planning strategies to lead the development of smarter cities, smart cities and a smarter community for all.
The first paradigm to establish is what is a smart city? It is a shallow misconception to think that cities can be smart just by being automated, high tech, connected and new. These aforementioned attributes, whilst often needed to upgrade infrastructure of cities, do not in themselves contribute to the quality of life for citizens. And it is in the improvement of quality of life that cities seek to become smarter.
Improving quality of life means tackling the legacy problems of 20th century cities. Fundamental symptoms of degradation, over capacity and rapid changes in the way we live have led to a series of problems.
Firstly, cities are fundamentally planned for the 20th century world of industrialisation. They suffer from traffic congestion, over density of residents, are extremely wasteful in resources and increasingly consuming energy. On top of this, the rapidly changing climate has led to shifts in the natural order, with cities having to deal with extreme weather and natural phenomenon.
In additional to natural challenges, the 21st century has also been an era of human instability with global economic downturns and uncertainties, coupled with ethnic and religious conflict, and the global attribution of terrorism plaguing our cities. And cities are prone to risk for the density of its population makes them tremendously difficult to manage, monitor, plan and update.
Therefore,Cybertecture X is focused on the evolutionary tactics needed to compose a strategic plan for smart cities. From the data intelligence needed to be garnered from our cities, to the creating of strategies for planning and procurement, to the design of cities, districts, buildings and public spaces, Cybertecture X aims to upgrade humanity’s greatest conglomerated creation of cities into truly healthy, happy and balanced smart cities for everyone around the world.
India has announced its own strategic plans to create smart cities in the drive to create better lives for its citizens. Cybertecture X looks forward to creating smart cities for India.