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The economy of 1,000 cities

June 03, 5:16 UTC+3
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KEY CONCLUSIONS:

  • There has been a paradigm shift

“...From the industrial city to the knowledge city. The method of production today is knowledge. The economy of transaction, the place is important, the quality of place and the quality of life. <...> They are central to the performance of the economy,” said Brian Mark Evans, Director, Glasgow Urban Laboratory 

The emergence of cities like <...> Bangalore, <...> happened because of the seeds that were sown in the 1980, the educational revolution that started at that point in time...  

“City mayors still think that everything we lake about is simply a well-paved road and land improvement. Even though digital economy is part of the global agenda, cities still must be dragged along. Moscow has already done so,” said Igor Shuvalov, First Deputy Prime Minister of the Russian Federation.

  • Drivers to boost competitiveness of cities: No power losses, evolution and dynamics of the city’s economy, higher disposable income, personal wealth, high technologies

“First, the Seamless City. Cities should operate in a way that we are not wasting energy-created heat, but just light. A second key idea <...> was really about evolution. And how could cities be adaptative to <...> all these transformations... A third conversation was about the Wellcity, this is really about wellness at the personal level... “And finally, this concept of the free city...,” said Roberto dos Reis Alvarez, Executive Director, Global Federation of Competitiveness Councils 

“We deem most successful those cities that use modern technologies in construction and, most importantly, consider the looks as well,” said Mikhail Men, Minister of Construction, Housing, and Utilities of the Russian Federation

CHALLENGES:

  • Russia is marked by an extreme development disparity

“<...> Perhaps the treatment of the dispersed cities in Siberia or on the Pacific East coast will be different," said Brian Mark Evans.

"By 2025, 60% of the world GDP will be produced in 600 major cities <...> In Russia, only two cities – Moscow and St. Petersburg – can somehow take part in this global competition. The first two cities produce 27% of Russia's GDP; it is 13% in the US and 9% in Europe," said Alexey Kudrin, Chairman of the Board, Center for Strategic Research Foundation; Deputy Chairman, Economic Council under the President of the Russian Federation.

  • The infrastructure is lagging behind the development of technologies

"<...> What happens is that the pace that the technology is changing [at]  is much faster [than the] pace the institutions are changing, the infrastructures are changing [at]. And this is new, this is really new, we always lived with technology," said Roberto dos Reis Alvarez.

SOLUTIONS:

  • Creating 15-20 major cities and agglomerations in Russia

"When Russia will create <...> large cities and agglomerations which will become the hubs bringing together technology and intellectual potential, social capital and quality of life, it is only then that it will be competitive on a global scale. <...> Those 15 cities with a population of more than a million people, and another five cities that would be able to gather more than a million people around taking the agglomeration into account, should receive special support and, perhaps, a special status," said Alexey Kudrin.

  • Introducing territory development standards

"As instructed by the Government, we are currently working on territory development standards. <...> It is primarily about the conditions required for economic development <...>," said Alexander Plutnik, General Director, Agency for Housing Mortgage Lending (AHML).

  • Effective management and vision of the future

"There is a need to have such a mayor who would have his own vision of the future and would be working hard in their position, and for a long time," said Michele Larue-Charlus, Deputy General Director for Planning, City Hall of Bordeaux.

  • Investments in infrastructure

"Significant investments are required – in high-speed trains, airports,[etc.]," added Michele Larue-Charlus.

  • Feedback from citizens

"Citizens should take political decisions, and we must create a climate of trust," said Michele Larue-Charlus.

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