The Australian government launched the first smart city database dubbed the National Cities Performance Framework, which was meant to track productivity and progress within the 21 largest cities in the nation.
The framework is meant to support the Smart Cities Plan of the government and the 6 main policy priorities that would assist in achieving objectives of the plan include, Infrastructure and investment, livability, innovation, digital opportunities, jobs, governance as well as planning and regulation.
The performance of the Australian cities would be measured according to indicators such as performance and context. The open online dashboard will begin by utilizing some of the data that was collected during the time of the 2016 census though data from both the public as well as, private sectors would be added via the annual updates.
This would be to assist industry, governments and the community when it comes to targeting better cities policy and investments including via the means of City Deals. The framework has about 46 indicators and draws on consistent, comparable as well as, reliable data sets.
Australian Smart Cities Key Indicators
- Housing price to the income ratio: a lack of affordable housing would weigh on the economic performance of a city and would undermine the social cohesion as well as increase the issue of wealth inequality gap. On average, across the largest cities in Australia, a median-priced dwelling would cost about 6.2 times the median annual income.
- Business creation: Within a dynamic and innovative economy high rate of business creation is needed. This is needed for the Australian cities to thrive in fast-paced and competitive global environments.
- Youth unemployment: at the present, the average rate of youth unemployment is at 11.9 percent.
- Job Accessible in 30 minutes; access to employment positions is a driver for quality and accessibility. Across the largest cities, 85.4 percent of employment positions are accessible within 30 minutes by vehicle.
This is in league with the commitment of Australia to provide open and accessible data sharing. The main focus of the performance framework is in the nation’s largest cities which each have a population that tops 80,000. The framework is also a living resource which can be improved over the course of time through annual updates as well as, yearly reviews.
The system provides the Australian government and the private sector with increased access to better monitor the cities’ policies and investment. It would be favourable considering it compiles reliable and comparable datasets within an easily accessible online type of format.
It would also provide a better way to find areas where cities fall short and would be the best means to target for investments. Though one operational approach would not work for every city as the framework would allow municipalities to see exactly what works for everyone and maybe borrow concepts from time to time.
This would allow for better understanding of challenges and opportunities within each individual city. The data received from the dashboard would assist cities to ascertain strategies for attracting and retaining talent while also spurring on economic growth.