Today, already more than half of the world population live in cities. Acccording to forecasts, this percentage will increase to two thirds of the world population by the year 2050. Information and communication technologies are used increasingly to solve existing and rising challenges within cities. Thus, so-called digital cities (or „smart cities“) emerge.

“Unter ‘Smart Cities’ verstehen wir die Aus- und Aufrüstung der Städte und ihrer Infrastrukturen mit digitaler Technologie, die Verknüpfung bisher getrennter Infrastrukturen oder ihrer Teilsysteme.” [‘Smart Cities’ refer to the equipment and upgrade of the cities and their infrastructure with digital technology, the connection of previously disconnected infrastructure or parts of its systems.]

– Bundesinstitut für Bau-, Stadt- und Raumforschung (BBSR) [Federal Institute for Research on Building, Urban Affairs and Spatial Development]

But while digitalization and interconnectedness can solve many challenges, others arise from it.

  • How can the functionality of digital cities be secured in extreme situations, crises and catastrophes?
  • How can the reliability of critical infrastructures in digitally interconnected cities be improved in the future?

These are only two of the questions, which we as a society need to address. With emergenCITY we try to explore answers to these and similar questions starting at three universities in Germany. If you want to simulate a case of emergency, find a solution and prevent such a crisis in real life, you are at the right place here.