ISO Standards and certification

Joint Smart City Certification programme for compliance with ISO 37120

ASIDEES, supported by PharosN team developed Smart City Monitor application, has designed a Joint Smart City Certification programme to assist cities, municipalities, city advisories in preparing the city for compliance with ISO 37120 "Sustainable development of communities -- Indicators for city services and quality of life". The certification programme shall support and improve and introduce new styles of city management and work in a data-rich digital transformation working environment.

City stakeholders such as city authorities, municipalities, utility providers and businesses as well as citizens have to deal with increasing complexity of cities. Their cities as Big System of Systems are in accelerated change and complexity. There are diverse criteria of quality of life and understandings of the urban sustainability. The management and monitoring of such systems require access to a massive number of data sources such as sensor networks, IoT, various automated and control and information systems, databases and smart everything. The enabling technology shall support and improve citizens living environment and let administrations to cope with these issues providing a simple holistic and transparent vision of city processes in real time.
The Joint Smart City Certification program is directly linked to the international standardisation processes taking place in European Union and all over the world. The ISO 37120:2014 provides a clear definition of the urban model structure, set of key performance indicators (KPIs) and data sources required for evaluation of the quality of life in urban communities. 

The Joint Smart City Certification program is based on the recent success of 'Smart Urbana' project coordinated by ASIDEES and implemented in five European cities. The 'Smart Urbana' demonstrated the effective novel solution for a holistic view of the sustainability status of the city as well as for each its service areas separately accordingly to the international standard ISO37120. The solution supports easy management and monitoring of the whole city and various focused areas of services, calculating its key performance indicators, statuses in real time, and answering the question “How are you, my city?” in any necessary detail.

All details about the programme can be found on the ASIDEES site: open the link

Realizing the compliance in practice

The implementation of the Smart City Monitor in a Smart City project begins with installation of the open urban model by ISO 37120:2014 “Sustainable development of communities — Indicators for city services and quality of life” provided with relevant sample data in spreadsheet files accordingly to the standard requirements.

City departments and other providers of urban data required by ISO 37120 can store relevant spreadsheets in shared folders (Dropbox, Google docs, own city server, etc) and update it periodically e.g. once per month, week or day.  All the files are accessed by the Smart City Monitor automatically collecting the data and immediately calculating all city indicators including those by ISO 37102 and others required by different standards e.g. Sustainable Development Goals, local KPIs used by the administration.

The urban model by ISO 37120 is scalable and open for further expansion and addition of KPIs to represent necessary urban infrastructure.

After local data is available Smart City Monitor can promptly support local governance and city services providing information about city performance in real time. As result, the city administrations as well as all other stakeholders receive powerful analytic tools enabling proactive continuous assessment of compliance with the major international standards for quality management and governance such as ISO, ITU, SDG by UN and others from the very beginning of its path toward Smart City.

Besides spreadsheets as data sources, Smart City Monitor has powerful tools for integration of large number of sensors, IoT, various automated and information systems such as SCADA, ERP, GIS, building automation, transportation, security, safety and environmental monitoring, assets management, etc.

The platform supports realization of the standards’ requirements referring to the issues of measurement, performance, indicators, analysis and data collection. The list of such standards for compliance includes as follows:

  • ISO 37120:2014 Sustainable development of communities — Indicators for city services and quality of life
  • ISO/TR 37150:2014 Smart community infrastructures -- Review of existing activities relevant to metrics
  • ISO 37151:2015 Smart community infrastructures -- Principles and requirements for performance metrics
  • ISO/TR 37152:2016 Smart community infrastructures -- Common framework for development and operation
  • ISO 18091:2014 Quality management systems — Guidelines for the application of ISO 9001:2008 in local government 
  • ITU-T SG5 FG-SSC: Focus group on smart sustainable cities
  • IEC/SEG 1: Systems Evaluation Group on Smart Cities (here)
  • CEN-CENELEC-ETSI SSCC-CG: Smart and Sustainable Cities and Communities Coordination Group
  • ISO 55000 and 55001:2014 Asset management -- Overview, principles and terminology
  • ISO 9000 and ISO 9001 Quality Management
  • ISO 14000 Environmental management
  • ISO 19011 Management systems auditing
  • ISO 26000 Social Responsibilities for Sustainable Development
  • ISO 31000 Risk management
  • ISO 50001 Energy management

By introducing the ISO standard as a common template for the initial urban model, Smart City Monitor supports implementation of the Smart City projects accordingly to the recommendations of the latest standards. At the same time its urban model is open to further step by step upgrading to gradually incorporate complex structure of thousands of different urban objects.

The Smart City Monitor team actively participates and contributes to the development of new standards, e.g. in the Focus Group “Data Processing Management for IoT and Smart Cities and Communities” (FG-DPM IoT and SCC) in International Telecommunication Union, Geneva. 

Certification by ISO 37120 and Sustainable Development Goals

Our company supports novel approach and practical solution toward cities certification that

- Presents city indicators in full compliance with ISO 37120:2014 standard “Sustainable development of communities — Indicators for city services and quality of life” and Sustainable Development Goals (SDG).

- Is open for quick adding any necessary local custom indicators

- Provides real time performance monitoring dashboards online (assess defined by local administration)

- Supports additional tools evidence analytics and benchmarking

- Augments city website presenting local governance achievements

- Certifies continuous compliance with ISO 37120:2014 and SDGs and local urban development goals as Living Standards

City departments and other providers of urban data required by ISO 37120 can store relevant spreadsheets in shared folders (Dropbox, Google docs, own city server, etc) that are automatically accessed by Smart City Monitor software in their city collecting data daily or weekly or monthly. The scalable urban model is open for further expansion and addition of KPIs to represent necessary urban infrastructure.

Unique benefits for administrations and citizens of cities:

Forward-looking city councils and municipalities can obtain now unique novel cutting-edge opportunity for certification of their Cities in compliance with ISO 37120 and its continuous visibility as online services for their communities and internationally. The online certification solution is open to the accommodation of newly developed standards such as ISO 37122, ISO 37123 and others as well as local indicators for smart governance and management.

The offer supports any city and community worldwide including small and middle size cities that are interested in transparency of governance and presentation of evidence of the local governance achievements.

The key difference and benefits for the communities

The common ISO 37120 certification for a city results in the official papers that provide single time assessment and audit of the city performance results. In the time of accelerating urban dynamics and change it verifies the past.

With Smart City Monitor public dashboards presenting actual city performance in real time online the certification is continuous presenting ongoing results in transparent way. Relevant analytics support quick and easy benchmarking and various evidence analytics. The open data is provided and updated by relevant trained municipality departments and city institutions accordingly to the requirements of international standard.  It is immediately transformed into public information services and analytics by Smart City Monitor.

As result, the city certification brings into community the visibility of “Living Standards of Quality of Life” presenting the real time evidence of the local governance achievements beside relevant official papers.

ISO 37120 standard as template for Smart City development

International standard ISO 37120:2014 “Sustainable development of communities — Indicators for city services and quality of life” released in 2014 (now in revision), became the first successful effort of experts to create integrated view for performance analysis of urban areas. The standard provides uniform definitions of what is measured and how it should be done and introduced common basis for reporting, comparison and benchmarking.

The ISO 37120:2014 defines 17 city themes of City Services and Quality of Life as follows:

  • Economy
  • Education
  • Energy
  • Environment
  • Finance
  • Fire and Emergency Response
  • Governance
  • Health
  • Recreation
  • Safety
  • Shelter
  • Solid Waste
  • Telecommunications and Innovation 
  • Urban Planning
  • Transportation
  • Wastewater
  • Water and Sanitation

Each theme has “Core” and “Supporting” Indicators as well as Data Sources.  

In all 17 themes there are

  • 46 core indicators which cities shall track and report,
  • 54 supporting indicators which cities should support in tracking and reporting

ISO requires third party verification of data sources and quality for ISO standard certification.

Importance of Standard 

The ISO 37120 standard is important as it

  • Steers and guides sustainability, effective governance and delivery of services
  • Allows accessing city’s performance of services, infrastructure, institutions (especially outsourced),
  • Improves city operations
  • Increases transparency and accountability
  • Leverages project funding, prioritizing city budgets for assessing quality of life,
  • Transparency and open data for public/private infrastructure developments and investment attractiveness
  • Facilitates learning and use
  • Makes possible various benchmarking options, targets definition and comparative analysis in policy development and planning
  • Assists in building core knowledge for city decision-making and enabling comparative insight and global benchmarking
  • Supports new Open Data and new application development

Using the standard as reference model for further developments 

Smart City Monitor team used the ISO 37120 standard for the implementation of the sample urban model and its open data set to let the full compliance. The sample data set is presented in spreadsheet files that have simple formats and are easy to understand.

Applied in Smart City Monitor, the sample model and data empower the effective template for quick implementation Smart City projects having immediate compliance with the standard. Being open and customisable, the urban model can be developed further gradually being upgraded to real city infrastructure and diverse linkages to optional data sources.

After the implementation Smart City Monitor engine, the urban model by ISO 37120 runs immediately using sample data. After the data in the spreadsheet files is replaced by the local data the model begin presenting actual city performance accordingly to the standard.  

Then it can be used for experimenting with additional city infrastructure objects, indicators, local data sets, sensors, smart meters, IoT and linkages to various city automated information systems and evaluation of sustainability. 

The Smart City Monitor team is ready to support learning, system prototyping and provide training to city administration employees and utility providers.

Additional links

Quick implementing Smart City Monitor