According to OECD, by 2050, nearly 70% of the world population is projected to be living in urban areas. As urbanization progresses on a global scale and at a rapid pace, cities are increasingly exposed to a wide range of issues, such as lack of infrastructure including water supply and sewage systems, traffic congestion, environmental pollution, waste disposal, and disaster response. These issues are particularly acute in fast-growing Asian cities, compelling them to take immediate measures to find solutions and achieve sustainable urban development.
On the other hand, Japan, as a country that has built disaster-resistant and environment-friendly cities based on its experience of rapid urbanization in the era of advanced economic growth, has a reservoir of infrastructure technologies and ample know-how that may contribute to the solution of urbanization-fuelled challenges. Exporting these technologies and know-how as Japan-made “city solutions” will not only contribute to the development of emerging countries but also provide new growth opportunities for Japanese companies and also bring further success to Japan’s infrastructure exporting initiatives that have been promoted through public-private collaboration.
PwC’s Cities Solution Centre functions as an advanced knowledge hub (knowledge collection base) that aggregates PwC’s insights and expertise in the field of urban infrastructure accumulated throughout its global network of offices in 776 cities. The Centre offers the following three functions: (1) a think tank function to provide research and recommendations; (2) an outbound advisory function to promote the export of city solutions; and (3) an inbound advisory function to help strengthen Japan’s urban competitiveness. With these functions, the Centre will provide overarching support to the Japanese central and municipal governments and businesses for the successful penetration of their excellent urban solutions into overseas markets. It will also support efforts to strengthen Japanese cities’ competitiveness to face the challenges of global urban competition by introducing urban management best practices from the world to Japan.
Three Functions of the Cities Solution Centre
1. Think Tank (research and recommendations)
- Assessment and analysis of Japanese cities’ competitiveness based on PwC’s global urban analysis framework known as “Cities of Opportunity”
- Provision of a platform in support of efforts to improve Japan’s urban competitiveness in cooperation with key players in the public, private, and academic sectors
- Offering of city-related information and advice working together with international organizations and government agencies
2. Outbound Advisory (support for the export of city solutions)
- Offering of advice about city solution export by capturing emerging countries’ urban needs in collaboration with PwC’s global urban practice team and matching them with leading-edge technologies and know-how held by Japanese municipal governments and businesses
- Support for the solution providing business, focusing on such areas as urban development, transportation, environment, disaster management, water supply and sewerage systems, and smart cities
[Sectors of focus] Urban development, transportation, environment/sustainability, disaster management, water/sewerage, smart cities, etc.
3. Inbound Advisory (support for efforts to enhance Japan’s urban competitiveness)
- Offering of advisory services to introduce excellent practices from abroad to Japan and enhance Japanese cities’ competitiveness and urban management capabilities
- Support for the development of urban branding strategies as well as the invitation and strategic use of MICE and sports events; in particular, joint support with PwC’s global mega-event team to strengthen the international competitiveness of Tokyo and other Japanese cities for the successful hosting of the 2020 Tokyo Olympic Games
[Sectors of focus] Enhancement of Japan’s urban competitiveness leveraging the opportunity of the 2020 Tokyo Olympic and Paralympic Games, in collaboration with PwC’s global mega-event team