The Smart City Hub Switzerland Association serves to promote cooperation and the exchange of knowledge. It sees itself as a vessel for intensive work on topics and projects of common interest.
Smart City stands for holistic, future-oriented development concepts that aim to make cities more efficient, technologically advanced, greener and more socially inclusive. Swiss cities and their administrations have been confronted with this issue at various levels for some time.
Important features of a smart city are networking, information exchange and closer cooperation with other stakeholders. A similar existing national platform is the Swiss Smart City Interest Group of the Swiss Federal Office of Energy, where cities, service providers and research institutions meet regularly to exchange information and experiences and to initiate projects. This open platform allows initial approaches, but not a more in-depth project-centred exchange.
In order to achieve the necessary deepening and to make synergies possible, a new form of cooperation in a neutral, service provider-independent vessel was sought and, within the framework of a development phase supported by the federal government, it was decided to found an Association to coordinate common topics and to work on projects within the Smart City frame.
The declared aim of the Association is to promote cooperation and the exchange of knowledge between cities and their businesses, service providers close to the federal government, as well as federal agencies and research in the Smart City area. It is intended to enable its members to use synergies and to share the knowledge and skills required for this purpose. The central task is to support the implementation of projects, in particular to save time and costs. Further tasks are the promotion of dialogue and cooperation, the development of innovative solutions that are close to the citizen and customer, and the use of synergies and scalability.
It serves as a vessel for more intensive work on topics of common interest, which must be dealt with in greater depth through specific working groups and also must be financed independently. The first possible subject areas are: A Smart City data platform, cooperation in mobility and Smart Parking. In this context, project-specific financial support from third parties, in particular the federal government, will also be used.
The founding members are the cities of St. Gallen, Winterthur, Zurich and Zug as well as the Swiss Post, SBB and Swisscom. Other cities have become members in recent months, such as Basel, Wil SG, Ittigen, Aarau, Lenzburg, Lucerne and Schaffhausen and there are others to follow (explicitly also cities from French-speaking Switzerland and Ticino). We are also pleased to welcome numerous benefactors and partners.
The founding meeting for the Association took place at the beginning of July 2018.
The Association's headquarters are in St. Gallen, and its office is located in Reinach near Basel.