Since becoming a global city, Singapore has faced 21st century challenges: among others, the digital revolution, an ageing population, quality of life, and global warming. In the past few years, the “city in a garden” (which replaced the 1963 “garden-city” in 1998), the smart city (late 2000s) and the “liveable city” (2014) have been presented as solutions. What realities lie behind these consensual and federative storytelling attempts? Finally, how can the contradictions induced by the joint implementation of liveability and sustainability be addressed? While the digital transition is a vector for performance and opportunities, its rising energy cost runs counter to the goal of reducing greenhouse gas emissions.
Antoine Picon, professor of the history of architecture and technologies at Harvard University and École Nationale des Ponts et Chaussées, shares his insight on the “smart city”.