Urban Institute Director Professor Simon Marvin has co-authored a new book titled ‘Smart Urbanism: Utopian Vision or False Dawn?’ with Andres Luque-Ayala and Colin McFarlane.

Smart Urbanism (SU) – the rebuilding of cities through the integration of digital technologies with buildings, neighbourhoods, networked infrastructures and people – is being represented as a unique emerging ‘solution’ to the majority of problems faced by cities today.

This book explores this common conception of smart urbanism and critically address what new capabilities are being created by whom and with what exclusions; how these are being developed – and contested; where is this happening both within and between cities; and, with what sorts of social and material consequences.

The aim of the book is to identify and convene a currently fragmented and disconnected group of researchers, commentators, developers and users from both within and outside the mainstream SU discourse, including several of those that adopt a more critical perspective, to assess ‘what’ problems of the city smartness can address. The volume provides the first internationally comparative assessment of SU in cities of the global north and south, critically evaluates whether current visions of SU are able to achieve their potential; and then identifies alternative trajectories for SU that hold radical promise for reshaping cities.

The book is available to buy from Routledge Publishing.