New smart cities guidance documents published

10 November 2014 

BSI, the business standards company has published two documents supporting the Government’s smart cities standardization strategy. PAS 182 Smart city concept model – Guide to establishing a model for data interoperability and PD 8101 Smart cities – Guide to the role of the planning and development process  were sponsored by BIS (Department for Innovations & Skills). This work enables the UK to lead the smart city standards agenda by providing the benchmark towards formal standardization work in the global arena. 

As cities grow larger so does the need to develop smart city infrastructures to deal with this. By enabling existing data and resources in a city to be shared effectively, a longer term vision of city planning and development can be taken. Therefore cities need agreements between organizations regarding data handling and technical infrastructure. This will allow information to be generated in the city to be directed and utilized to support both the day-to-day management of the city and long-term plans.

Scott Steedman Director of Standards at BSI said: “Smart Cities need Standards. The UK leads the world in shaping business standards. If we are to make the most of the global opportunities from smart cities, we need to work fast to structure the knowledge that can help city leaders, communities, innovators and technology providers recognize what good looks like and how these concepts can bring benefits for all. These latest pieces of guidance will facilitate the work we are doing within this arena. I’m delighted that the UK is the first country to publish a set of standards that will help us navigate the governance and leadership challenges that smart technologies bring for cities everywhere.”

• PAS 182

Data can transform the capability of a city, enabling the development of systems and services, and supporting informed decisions. However, decision-makers and citizens are unlikely to have the necessary expertise to decipher this data, which is often labelled using language and terms from the originating sector, but forms a barrier with other sectors. PAS 182 addresses this lack of interoperability by defining an overarching model of concepts and relationships that can be used to describe data from any sector.  

The specification was developed with collaborative input from experts such as: Cabinet Office, Defra, esd-toolkit, Glasgow City Council, Information Commissioner’s Office, Local Government Association, London Borough of Redbridge, OASIS, Open Data User Group, Open University, Peterborough City Council, BSI Consumer and Public Interest Network, Socitm, techUK, Universitat Oberta de Catalunya and W3C.

Some benefits of PAS 182:

  • Reduced cost as the need to recollect and verify data is removed
  • Integrated city systems and services driven by data
  • Common understanding of the needs of communities
  • Shared objectives, collaboratively developed and evidenced using data
  • Businesses/communities creating innovation and improved quality of life for citizens

Paul Davidson Director of Standards at LeGSB (Local e-Government Standards Body) said: “The Smart City Concept Model helps multi-agency projects to organize data, and make connections from shared policy objectives through to joined up systems. It is relevant wherever many organizations provide many services to many communities.” 

• PD 8101

Published Document (PD) 8101 is relevant to major developments, major infrastructure projects, refurbishment programmes, street works and improvements to the public realm. It considers how each stage of the planning and development process could support smart city opportunities and benefit from good practice in smart urban planning and design. It identifies ways which focus on making the city smarter on the whole and sets out what needs to be done at each stage, indicating where to go for further help. 

PD 8101 was developed with collaborative input from experts such as: Atos, Balfour Beatty Living Places, Cambridge Centre for Smart Infrastructure and Construction, Capgemini, Concerto, Opportunity Peterborough, Royal Borough of Greenwich, Schneider Electric, Shanghai Institute of Standardization, Space Syntax, City of Gothenburg and Living PlanIT

Some benefits of PD 8101:

  • Places foundations for a smart city project at the planning and implementation stage saving time and money
  • Minimizes the cost of having to retrofit vital smart technology
  • Allows smart city products/services, and the business models and processes required to fund and operate them, to be tested/trialled before rolling them out citywide

PD 8101 can be used by those involved in the planning and implementation of developments and infrastructure projects, including city leadership, Planning Policy Makers, Planning Case Officers, Regeneration Officers and Developers and the Consultants who work with them. 

Speaking recently at the Brussels conference “Standards: Your Innovation Bridge”*, Scott Steedman added: ”Standards are the knowledge fuel for business and industry. Standards-making supports innovation by bringing communities together, working with them to identify future needs, and helping them to share and develop the knowledge they need. Our work with smart cities is a big part of that process.”

*For more information on the Brussels conference “Standards: Your Innovation Bridge” - Bridging the Gap between Research and Standardization see: