The concept of 'smart cities' has been around for a while now, and it's easy to think not much has happened, given all the hype. Actually, we've been in the early stages of the creative/testing process - trying out ideas at small scale, learning, rejecting, revising, and testing out the next iteration. Most of this work has been happening below the radar screen of the average person. But, we've been evolving and learning.
Here's a good summary from an urban planner about the two major phases we've been thru so far, and what he sees as the third phase coming. I'm not quite as idealistic as he is about the third phase, but I think the evolution he describes is pretty accurate & worth a few minutes of your time. Let me know what you think.
We humans are social creatures who achieve our highest potential when we collaborate. Truly smart cities will nurture smart citizens. After all, cities are not just buildings and smart grids; they are people seeking to pursue their dreams of a better life.