A Unified Smart City Model (USCM) for smart city conceptualization and benchmarking

Leonidas Anthopoulos*, Marijn Janssen, Vishanth Weerakkody

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleScientificpeer-review

81 Citations (Scopus)


Smart cities have attracted an extensive and emerging interest from both science and industry with an increasing number of international examples emerging from all over the world. However, despite the significant role that smart cities can play to deal with recent urban challenges, the concept has been being criticized for not being able to realize its potential and for being a vendor hype. This paper reviews different conceptualization, benchmarks and evaluations of the smart city concept. Eight different classes of smart city conceptualization models have been discovered, which structure the unified conceptualization model and concern smart city facilities (i.e., energy, water, IoT etc.), services (i.e., health, education etc.), governance, planning and management, architecture, data and people. Benchmarking though is still ambiguous and different perspectives are followed by the researchers that measure -and recently monitor- various factors, which somehow exceed typical technological or urban characteristics. This can be attributed to the broadness of the smart city concept. This paper sheds light to parameters that can be measured and controlled in an attempt to improve smart city potential and leaves space for corresponding future research. More specifically, smart city progress, local capacity, vulnerabilities for resilience and policy impact are only some of the variants that scholars pay attention to measure and control.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)77-93
Number of pages17
JournalInternational Journal of Electronic Government Research (IJEGR)
Issue number2
Publication statusPublished - 2016


  • Architectures
  • Benchmarking
  • E-Government
  • Frameworks
  • Measurement
  • Modeling
  • Smart City

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