Public-private innovation leads to better business decisions


Two and a half years have passed since CISCO, TDC and Citelum partnered with the City of Copenhagen on the urban living lab, Street Lab. The purpose? To identify solutions which can reduce CO2 emissions, cut operational costs and improve public services. Today the partners can harvest the results. And the results are clear: Public-private innovation leads to better business decisions for all.

The partnership between CISCO, Citelum and TDC is named Street lab because the goal of the project was to get firsthand experience with the implementation of smart city solutions in the streets of Copenhagen. As a result, the partners built a laboratory in the center of Copenhagen where different technologies were tested.

Avoid unfeasible investments
Citelum provides street lighting in Copenhagen and more than 1000 cities globally. The company has used the lessons from Street Lab to guide its investment and market strategy. One example is the growing demand for solutions to improve parking in cities. Citelum as well as others had their eye on expensive hardware solutions for cities – although it was questionable whether these solutions could really prove their worth in a larger scale.

The collaboration in Street Lab pointed towards a whole new generation of smart parking solutions, solely based on machine learning and use of existing data. Instead of investing in developing a sensor solution for smart parking, Citelum decided to look closer at air quality monitoring as a promising new business area.

Focus on the problem - not the technology
The key lesson from the Street Lab project is that future projects should be driven by a feasible business case.

“Focus on the problem you want to solve – not the technology”

Claus Holm, Regional sales manager at CISCO

“Stop talking about smart city and focus on creating value for the city"

Søren Nørgaard Madsen IoT strategist at TDC

Want to know why? Then have a look at the video below. Here, the four partners share their views on the next steps in the development of smart, sustainable solutions in Copenhagen.