The concept of Smart Cities is gaining importance in many countries. It aims to, significantly improve efficiency and quality in the areas of urban mobility, communication, shopping and living through the use of networked devices, cloud computing and Big Data. China is very successfully combining embedded sensors, meters, cameras and other surveillance technologies with Big Data processing and artificial intelligence (AI) analysis. There are reportedly nearly 800 Chinese smart cities pilot programs underway or in planning, which would represent more than half of all projects worldwide.
There is potential here for European SMEs, for example in development contracts or in cooperation with Chinese companies that have access to mass data for training AI systems. Current application areas include Smart Transport (real-time data monitoring, transmission and analysis, automotive internet), Smart Water (pollution treatment, water quality testing and monitoring, waste recycling), Smart Energy (remote monitoring, energy saving, new energy transmission), and Smart Healthcare (electronic records, wearable devices, remote medical treatment, e-commerce platforms for medicines).
Shanghai offers opportunities for smart financial services, and the manufacturing metropolis of Dongguan has potential for smart security projects due to the large number of migrant workers. The Zhuzhou Yunlong area is predestined for the development of high-quality landscape resources, and Beijing is at the forefront of developing intelligent transportation systems. As a world-renowned tourist city, Guilin attaches great importance to the construction of smart tourism projects, and in some rural areas, smart agriculture projects may also be of interest to European companies. We recommend European companies to closely observe and analyze Chinese innovations and IP in these areas.