Our urban world



Our urban world

The 21st century is being defined by the rise of cities.

More and more people are choosing to live, work and play in and around cities.
This is leading to a number of challenges. 

We build smart communities to create smart cities.

UrbanTide supports you on the journey through collaboration to improve how well your city serves its citizens' needs. Our role is to listen, collaborate, plan and see to completion projects and initiatives that make use of and improve data and technological resources for ever increasing demands.

It's time to start your smart cities journey - we'll be with you every step of the way. 




How smart is your city?





How smart is your city?



Smart cities readiness toolkit

A smart city is defined as the integration of data and digital technologies to form a strategic approach to sustainability, citizen well-being and economic development.
— Definition created by UrbanTide in partnership with the Scottish Government, 2014

Our UrbanTide smart cities readiness toolkit is a tried, tested and up-to-date self-assessment methodology that combines the latest smart cities thinking (for example, from Boyd Cohen, BSI PAS 181-183, IDC, ISO etc) with local knowledge to help you shape your smart cities ambition and roadmap priorities.

The material and online survey that we provide have been developed in partnership with national and city governments over the last 5 years. 

The following five key dimensions lie at the heart of the smart cities readiness.

Strategic intent

Successful smart cities have a strategy and roadmap setting out how investment in data and digital technologies enable service reform and partner collaboration. An effective region focuses on delivering improved outcomes aligned to the region’s strategic priorities.


Successful smart cities invest in open, flexible, integrated and scalable ICT architectures that enable accelerated service innovation such as provision of automated and real-time dynamic response capabilities.


Successful smart cities make effective use of their data assets to secure better outcomes. They invest in system-wide data capture, integration and analytics capabilities. Open data underpins the smart city's commitment to transparency and innovation.

Governance and service delivery models

Successful smart cities adapt traditional organisational models of delivery to realise the opportunities of data and digital technologies. They invest in system-wide partnership models focused on shared outcomes.

Citizen and business engagement

Successful smart cities make best use of data and digital technologies to invest in enhanced openness and transparency. Citizen and business engagement and stakeholder ownership of service reform are essential within a smart region. Smart regions proactively improve take-up of digital services while supporting the digitally excluded.

UrbanTide offers a managed service to support your use of the self-assessment toolkit to help you identify how mature your organisation is against the 5 key dimensions and the purposeful next steps on how best to improve towards your smart cities ambition.

Free self-assessment

Below are a number of freely available documents that outline how the work was undertaken with Scotland's seven cities:

  • Smart Cities Maturity Model and Self-Assessment Tool Guidance, co-developed by UrbanTide with Scottish Government and the Scottish Cities Alliance DOWNLOAD HERE
  • Overview of the Smart City Maturity Model DOWNLOAD HERE

Supported self-assessment

  • Support to identify your key internal & external stakeholders
  • Up to two discussion workshops with your internal project team to design the self-assessment
  • Up to two engagement workshops with key internal & external stakeholders to introduce the self-assessment 
  • Your own branded online survey - set up with the questions agreed in the discussion workshops
  • Reusable workshop delivery resources including slide content to help secure stakeholder buy-in
  • Draft and final analysis of survey feedback
  • Draft and final smart cities readiness assessment findings for your city
  • Draft and final prioritised outline investment roadmap

The self-assessment enables YOU to:

  • Understand how smart your city is now “as-is”
  • Define where you want “to be”
  • Start to define what you need to do to get there
  • Learn from global best practice examples of success from worldwide

Self-assessment order form

Please get in touch to find out more about the UrbanTide supported self-assessment:

Name *

Smart cities toolkit projects

Reducing carbon in Wales

UrbanTide worked with Jacobs, Neath Port Talbot County Borough Council (NPTCBC) and Welsh Government to establish the scope and viability of NPTCBC targets. Through a Demonstration Projects Study & Engagement Report, UrbanTide helped to identify credible options for projects as well as building and establishing best practices.

Find out more about Neath Port Talbot’s Smart journey.

7 cities lead the way

In partnership with the Scottish Government and the Scottish Cities Alliance, UrbanTide developed and applied our own unique “Smart Cities Maturity Model”. To be used for the planning, delivery, evaluation and ongoing development of a city to the true “Smart City” status.  

Download the condensed report and please get in touch to learn more about the project.


Master Planning


smart cities


Master Planning


smart cities


Designing 21st century cities and communities is complex.

We help you kick-start the smart city transformation process with clear goals, informed by engaged citizens with solid business cases and a clear route to funding. 

Smart city maturity assessment

We help planners identify and understand what smart projects are planned, commenced or are aspirational for their regions, cities and districts. Our agile Smart Cities Maturity Model and Self-Assessment Tool adapt existing models and best practices. They help you understand your position on the ‘smart’ journey as they are designed to walk stakeholders through the process of identifying the next steps required to realise your ambitions. 

Business cases and funding opportunities

Building on the smart maturity assessment, we help you create business cases for smart, future and sustainable projects on various scales. The business cases are developed based on our domestic and international experience and knowledge of future trends and technologies in the IoT, low-carbon, sustainable and smart city fields. Business cases are developed to unlock investments and resources required to deliver a system-of-systems smart city approach.

Citizen and stakeholder engagement

It is important for a city to invest in and provide enhanced openness that promotes citizen and business engagement in, and ownership of, the transformation processes and service reforms accompanying master planning procedures. We offer various online and offline engagement services that keep citizens involved throughout the project. These services include the development and management of online interactive questionnaires, mapping tools, hackathons, workshops, data visualisation and compelling data stories.

Our services enable YOU to:

  • Use a flexible toolkit: Quickly identify and understand what smart projects are planned, commenced or are aspirational for your region, city or district.
  • Develop a roadmap: Identify next steps, actions and resources required to realise your ambitions, develop business cases and determine funding opportunities.

  • Engage at the core: Engage citizens, businesses and stakeholders to secure buy-in on all levels.

Get in touch to find out how we can kick-start your smart city transformation process. - the next phase of Glasgow City Centre District Regeneration Frameworks

UrbanTide is working in partnership with a multidisciplinary team led by MVRDV, Austin-Smith:Lord and Space Syntax to design District Regeneration Frameworks for four districts of Glasgow City Centre and to create a clear urban structure to realise Glasgow’s economic, cultural and social potential.

Find out more about Glasgow City Centre's four districts project.




Smart delivery




Smart delivery


Building smart cities and smart communities

UrbanTide has world-leading delivery experience.
We support you in the following ways:

Leadership and strategic intent

Successful smart cities have visionary leadership. We help you set out a vision to make your city and community smarter.  

Programme and project management

We manage your smart initiatives to embed the ethos of smart cities, collaboration and engagement to get results quickly.  

Making data more valuable

We help you realise the value of your data assets through data integration, data analysis, open data publication and community building and data selling.

Citizen and stakeholder engagement

There is no point to developing unwanted services. Through our engagement techniques, we help you ensure that services and outcomes improve by giving stakeholders and citizens what they want.


Supply chain management

We ensure that the supplier community is primed and ready for your opportunities and are engaged in the process to improve the return on investment.  

Capacity building

We help your teams to build capacity in smart cities and community delivery so that the learning is embedded within your organisation and continues to benefit citizens long after we have left.  

Smart ecosystem design

We know the marketplace for the newest and most innovative solutions and also whether they do or do not work. We match your requirements with what delivers the best benefits and set out a plan to make this happen.    

It's time to start your smart cities journey.

Smart cities projects already delivered

Building Smart Communities for OPEN Glasgow's Engagement Programme

Before forming UrbanTide, the co-founders worked with Glasgow City Council and other partners across the public and private sectors to develop and deliver the OPEN Glasgow programme, 'putting people at the heart of Glasgow's future'.  

Learn more about engaging with local communities to deliver benefits for everyone.

3 aspiring cities

Senior management in Perth, Stirling and Inverness authorities identified smart cities learning as critical to the success of their smart cities ambitions. The key challenges were to engage leadership and improve leadership’s understanding of smart cities and how to leverage existing governance and processes for smart city funding.

Read the case study to discover how UrbanTide’s team provided smart cities education and guidance.



Open Data Lab


Getting the most from open data


Open Data Lab


Getting the most from open data


We help you develop confidence and competence in the growing open data and smart cities ecosystem.

Following a successful year delivering open data training on behalf of the Scottish Government, we are now offering new courses to everyone. Our training packages are developed based on our years of experience supporting cities and public and private organisations in their open data and smart cities journeys.

Delivery and facilitation of this course are beyond excellent. Pitch, content and deliverables were spot on. Key messages were delivered clearly and knowledge share is invaluable.
— Gillian McNish, Records & Information Management Officer Corporate Services - Dumfries and Galloway Council

Open Data Lab

We work with you to create a tailored workshop and mentoring program to help you and your organisation prepare for the opportunities and challenges of the open data-led economy.


We define and identify your organisation’s needs and assets, including organisational directives. We build roles and responsibilities across your team, explore technological challenges, look at the availability of data and examine your experiences utilising data to further your advocacy and development work.


Mentoring with a long-term view, we ensure that open data knowledge and lessons learned are transformed into strategic and business goals. We help you incorporate the operational processes that have a real impact not only on the organisation but also on your wider stakeholders.


When we measure success, we focus on higher-order results like changes in practices, internal and external processes and shifts in organisation and personnel attitudes for the creation of concrete outcomes that benefit citizens and communities.


We focus on your organisation's collective awareness of the value and benefits open data offers. We help teams realise their strategic goals and visions to increase their efficiency, effectiveness and sustainability via open data.

Open data training for Scottish Government

We have had a fantastic year touring Scotland and delivering open data training pilot workshops on behalf of the Scottish Government to a total of 317 public sector delegates from 72 public bodies. Here we review what delegates said about our training and how that feedback shaped our new training programme.

Contact us for information on our Open Data Lab and mentoring programme.