In many ways, the smart city concept is simply good urban planning that incorporates both advances in digital technology and new thinking in the age-old city concepts of relationships, community, environmental sustainability, participatory democracy, good governance and transparency. Often, the intelligent city concept involves a re-urbanization of cities, encouraging urbanites to focus their time, energy and abilities to the ongoing urban project through a new layer of electronic connectivity. A virtuous circle is thus formed, in which the city empowers its citizens to power its evolution, creating a positive feedback loop. Above all, smart cities are interactive cities.
What makes urban dwellers happy and content with city life? More disposable income helps, of course, but it may come as a surprise to learn that money is not the most important factor. URBAN HUB looks into the new field of “happy cities”, and asks, “Why are they so happy?”