Training Course

Citizen Centric Spaces


As cited by Government of India (2015), the aim of smart cities is to provide essential infrastructure, a decent standard of living for its citizens, and a clean and sustainable environment through the application of smart solutions. However, the meaning of smart city could be different for different citizens depending on their socio-cultural and economic realities. We must be able to inculcate all such variations of contextual realities in our urban spaces. To achieve this, the practitioners and academia must steer away from the proverbial ‘technology-centric’ approach and apply design thinking principles to create/retrofit ‘citizen-centric’ urban spaces. To do so, citizens must be included in the process of urban planning. The proposed training strives to expose our learners to various toolkits to achieve these participatory modes of enabling a city’s transition towards being a ‘smart city’. Before doing so, it gently aims to explain the foundation principles of smart cities too.



Objectives of the course

The learners would be able to:

  1. understand the basics of urban planning , emerging technologies and design thinking.
  2. understand the key components of smart cities with special emphasis on    urban infrastructures and services.
  3. understand the main principles of designing and implementing smart city transition using citizen-centric and citizen inclusive approach.
  4. capture the needs and aspirations of citizenry of urban infrastructure, services, and spaces.
  5. understand the main challenges of retrofitting a city to be smart
  6. evolve mechanisms of resolve related challenges of a city’s shift to be a smart city
  7. conceptualise the transition of a city to be smart, green , safe and hack-free city.
  8. apply the required tools to design / retrofit a present identified city to be a smart city


Number of Days : Preferably two weeks

Target Audience : Probationers , City Leaders/ Mayors, City Planners & Researchers

Description on Modules

  Module 1:  Understanding Building Blocks

1.1 Overview of Governance

  1. SDGs & Inclusive Governance
  2. Urban & Rural Governance: Structure, Processes and Planning
  3. Local Governance : Municipal Performance Index 2019

(Pre-Read 1: The 17 Goals- 

Group Exercise1 : Post-Covid Governance Concerns of Developed Countries - and Developing Countries- Mass Migration, water shortage, overcrowding, slums ; Reverse Migration – Shelters, PSD, Transport etc )

1.2 Resolving Governance Concerns by Design Thinking

  1. Stages of Design Thinking
  2. Designing Governance to be Citizen Centric & Citizen Inclusive:  Co-Creating & Crowd Sourcing Ideas for Public Wellbeing
  3. Public Participation Framework

(Pre-Read 2 - Case Studies of Digital Platforms for Public Policy Formulation - - Singapore , – India

Group Exercise 2 : Identifying and Analysing Digital Platforms to Capture Voices of All so as to build contextualised and personalised spaces)

1.3 Digital Disruption in Governance by Emerging Technologies

  1. Emerging Digital Technologies and Industrial Revolution 4.0
  2. Differentiating e-Government, e-Governance and Digital Disruption
  3. Role of Emerging Technologies in Governance
  4. A Peek in Future : Robotics for Digital Transformation in Urban Existence and related concerns
  5. Discussing Some Interesting Cases from India & Elsewhere

(Pre-Read3 – Role of ICT in Governance; Theme Paper IIPA @2019 )


2.1 Local Municipal Governance and ICTs

  1. Key Municipal Services and Role of ICT
  2. Integrated Approach to Municipal Governance

2.2 : Key Components of Smart Cities

  1. Defining Smart Cities & Classifying them ( Greenfield, Retrofitted)
  2. Key Goals of a Smart City: Happiness for All- Quality of life, economic competitiveness, and sustainability
  3. Key Features of a Smart City
    1. Instrumented : Role of IoTs, Wearable Medical Devices and Cloud Computing
    2. Intelligent and Networked : Use of Command & Control Centres & Dashboards
    3. Connected : Need and mechanisms of building an Urban Stack
    4. Predictive :Use Of AI/ ML/NLP /BigData Analtics
  1. Designing it Together : CrowdSourcing Ideas, SandBoxing, Hackathoning
  1. Implementing it in a Self-Sustaining Mode : Financing Options, PPP
  2. Agile Framework - Monitoring & Evaluating  it using TELOS etc

( Pre-Read : Smart City Collaboration Model : A case Study of University-City Collaboration ;;

"Impact of GIFT City & Brief Study of it’s Infrastructure", International Journal of Emerging Technologies and Innovative Research ( | UGC and ISSN Approved), ISSN:2349-5162, Vol.5, Issue 11, page no. pp1038-1042, November-2018, Available at :

(Mini Exercise – Analyse, using TELOS the Relevance of Some Smart Applications in Indian Context : Smart streetlights, Parking sensors, Garbage sensors and automated waste collection)

2.3: Understanding How it is Implemented– Case Studies of Smart Cities

  1. e-Governance in Local Municipal Governance in Developing Countries ( Bengaluru Municipal  Corporation)
  2. Smart Cities as War Rooms ( Surat Smart City)
  3. Global Best Practices : Singapore Intelligent Nation

( Pre-Read :

  1. Case Study of Smart City Projects in India : An analysis of Nagpur, Allahabad , Dehradun ;
  2. The Estonian vision of new models of smart city – e-Estonia ; )

Class Discussions : Identify all the Related Institutional Arrangements eg The Smart City Council, Regulations – PURA, AMRUT and Mandate of GoI eg: 100 Smart Cities)

2.4 : Discussions on Mini Project - Designing @MyOwn City of Dreams


  1. Technology Concerns : Safety & Security of CII, Organisations and Devices, Interoperability, Individual Privacy, IT infrastructure requirements, Energy Management, e-Waste
  2. HR Challenges : Role of SmartMayors, CXOs etc
  3. Socio-Economic Reality : Digital Divide; Overlapping Semi / Peri-Urban Spaces
  4. Financial Concerns

( Pre-Read : Changing nature of CyberCrimes and CII; GoI Cyber Initiatives and Organisations

Class Discussions: Headwinds and TailWinds to Vision of SmartCities , Centre Director (eGovernment Leadership Centre) at ISS, National University of Singapore)

Class Exercise : Develop a PEST Political, Economic, Social and Technical matrix with all possible indicators that must be present while retrofitting a city to be smart)

 MODULE 4 : Mini Project - Designing @MyOwn City of Dreams

Identify any city , identify its signature style and issues and redesign it

Assure – Your City has following features:

  1. Ability to crowd source ideas
  2. Robust Proactive Disaster Responding Units
  3. Healthy, Green, Zero-Carbon (Carbon FootPrint ), Pro-poor , Gender/LGBT+  Friendly Spaces
  4. Inclusive Cities for Ambient & Assisted Living for Aging, Single Member and People with Disabilities (PWD)
  5. Self-Sustaining in terms of IT implementation and Financing
  6. Hack-Free
  7. Minimum e-Waste ( managing legacy infrastructure)

Capacity Building & Social Awareness

Resource Material 


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