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Polluted, congested Jakarta fails to be in world's top 100 smartest cities

Jakarta Globe - April 12, 2024

Jayanty Nada Shofa, Jakarta. The highly polluted and congested Jakarta is struggling in the Smart City Index, as it fails to crack the top 100 once again.

A recent report by the Institute for Management Development (IMD) shows that Indonesia ranks 103rd place out of 142 cities on the 2024 Smart City Index. The research combines hard data and survey responses to show how technology is enabling cities to achieve a greater quality of life.

Last year, Indonesia was 102nd out of 141 countries worldwide. Makassar – the capital of South Sulawesi – and North Sumatra's Medan rank 115th and 112th in the 2024 index, respectively.

Zurich became the world's smartest city, according to the index. Seconded by the Norwegian capital of Oslo. Singapore is the only ASEAN member in the top 10 of the world's smartest cities this year, placing 5th.

"From a list of 15 indicators, survey respondents were asked to select 5 that they perceived as the most urgent for their city. The higher the percentage of responses per area, the greater the priority for the city," the report reads.

For Jakarta's case, about 68.4 percent of the respondents were most concerned about air pollution. As many as 66 percent of the respondents also picked road congestion, the report revealed. Corruption and transparency (51.7 percent) became the third-most pressing concern in Jakarta. Followed by unemployment (50.7 percent) and basic amenities such as water and waste facilities (46 percent).

The report also shows that about 69.4 percent of the respondents said they were willing to concede personal data to improve Jakarta's traffic congestion.

Respondents in Makassar share quite similar concerns as Jakartans with road congestion (52.6 percent) perceived as the most urgent in the city, seconded by unemployment (52.5 percent). Security became the most urgent area for Medan with about 58.3 percent of the respondents in agreement.

Jakarta is synonymous with heavy traffic congestion. As a case in point, it would take approximately 23 minutes and 20 seconds on average to drive 10 kilometers in Jakarta based on the 2023 statistics, according to the TomTom Traffic Index. For comparison, Kuala Lumpur's average driving time for 10 kilometers stands at approximately 16 minutes and 50 seconds.

According to air quality monitoring firm IQAir, Jakarta's pollution falls into the "moderate" category on April 12, although many of its citizens today are currently visiting other cities as part of the Eid homecoming exodus. On normal days, Jakarta's air quality can reach the "unhealthy for sensitive groups" status, or even the more severe category of "unhealthy".

Indonesia is in the process of relocating its capital from Jakarta to a city entirely built from scratch called Nusantara in East Kalimantan.

Source: https://jakartaglobe.id/news/polluted-congested-jakarta-fails-to-be-in-worlds-top-100-smartest-citie