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Is the Lean Startup approach applicable to smart city projects?

Aug 4 2015

The lean startup
Last week I read Eric Ries business bestseller “the lean startup: how constant innovation creates radically successful businesses”. Despite this somewhat grotesque title, I found it a great and revealing book on how startups can be more successful. His main argument is that startups –but established firms as well- can achieve faster and better results if they adopt a more scientific approach in their innovation efforts. Too may startups and innovation projects fail because they build things that people don’t want.Read more…

Building a new science city from scratch: Skolkovo, Moscow.

May 22 2012

Can Russia create some sort of Silicon Valley, and join the league of strong knowledge economies? It has not worked so far: the country has a great research tradition, but is much less successful in knowledge-based entrepreneurship, business creation, and tech transfer. But at least it is trying now. Last weekend, I was in Moscow. We were invited to discuss the plans to create an entirely new “innovation city” in Skolkovo, a green area just outside Moscow, about 20 Km from the city centre.Read more…

Creative entrepreneurship in Portugal: Looking for directions

Feb 16 2012

Portugal’s economy is stalling; new, creative ideas and business are badly needed. From this perspective, the Serralves Foundation in Porto organised a conference on creative entrepreneurship. How can it be promoted, what barriers of all sorts must be removed, which type of policies make sense? Hundreds of people showed up, a great mix of entrepreneurs, students, policymakers and managers.Read more…

Some impressions of the Urbact Summer University, held in Krakow, Poland, 28-31 August 2011

Sep 3 2011

In urban policy, there are some buzzwords that are repeated all the time: sustainable development, involving stakeholders, integrative urban development rather than sectoral approaches, ‘bottum up rather than top down’, etc.. It sounds nice, but how to do it in practice?
The Urbact Summer University was designed to provide some training to local policymakers all over Europe, and to exchange experiences.Read more…

The smartest cities on earth?

Jan 15 2011

Fast Company recently presented a top 10 "Smartest Cities on earth '. Smart basically means: full of IT and green technologies. How smart these cities really are remains to be seen, as many of the towns are still under construction.

A few notable towns in the list:Read more…