The city we live in, the buildings, the services and the people all impact on our quality of life. In modern times, we have more opportunity than ever to pick and choose where we want to live, and a number of factors can influence that decision.
However, our cities are not just about the people, the weather or the food. The Cities In Motion Index ranks our cities based on other metrics: the use of technology, urban planning, sustainability and the economy, in order to discover which of our cities are "smartest."
The Spanish IESE Business School's report says that Tokyo, London, and New York performed the best within a vast number of categories, including those above and metrics ranging from transport to broadband. After studying 135 cities based on 50 indicators, the school found that out of the top 20, 10 are European, six Americana and three are Asian.
However, just because a city performs well in some categories does not mean it is a perfect place to live. For example, Tokyo was ranked no.1 in "human capital," but comes in 20th in terms of the environment, and was ranked 125th in "social cohesion" -- a dimension in which many of the top cities failed, with London coming in at 96th, and New York as the 110th worst.
The issue urban planners face is maintaining a balance. Poor "transport systems" can have an effect on "international outreach," and "broadband penetration" can improve or hamper local businesses, which in turn impacts on the economy. Rather than trying to shine in one or two categories, city planners should try and maintain at least minimum standards in a wider range of metrics.
This post was originally published on Smartplanet.com