SMART Cities: the Future of Urban Development

Silicon Valley Innovation Center

Silicon Valley Innovation Center


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About the course

What Is An Executive Immersion Program?

The leaps forward of recent years in cloud computing, connectivity, embedded hardware, security and artificial intelligence are all contributing to the disruption of our cities. We see the fruits of these advances in areas such as transportation, energy, waste management and construction, where data is empowering us to build smarter, cleaner, more resource-efficient urban environments. Startups are the pioneers of this revolution; they are combining emerging technologies with innovative business models to build the cities of the future.

Our immersion program will educate you in all of these trends, connect you with the companies pioneering groundbreaking solutions and inspire you to turn your own company into a leading innovator capable of producing long-term growth.

What Will I Learn?

Our immersion program is made up of sessions with leading companies operating at the forefront of major smart cities trends such as:


There is a huge range of startups working on products and services to make our cities more energy efficient. These include Solarcity, a leading provider of solar energy systems that deliver reliable, clean energy to homes and businesses; Bidgely, developers of an energy monitoring and management solution; and SoloPower, a producer of thin-film photovoltaic cells and modules that help solar electricity generation. The company has raised nearly $500 million in venture capital.

Parking and Transportation

The way we get around urban areas is undergoing a fundamental transformation thanks to big data, artificial intelligence and robotics. Companies in this sector include Voyage, a self-driving car maker targeting retirement communities, Autonomic, a vehicle connectivity platform and Barnacle, a sharing-economy community that matches drivers with people who need to send or receive shipments.

Waste Management

Advances in the waste management space include chemical processes used by Biocellection to upcycle plastic into new value. Other companies operating in this niche include Ventana Ecogreen, while Integrated Resource Recovery turns end-of-life tires into performance materials. Ternion Bio Industries is using proprietary technology to capture greenhouse gas emissions and turn them into useful, algae-based products using solar power.

Architecture and Construction

The way our cities are conceived and built is seeing digital innovation from companies such as RoomReveal, a social platform for design professionals, Pocketdoor, a construction project management platform, and Katerra, a technology company digitizing building development, design and construction.

Program Agenda

This Schedule Is Tentative And Features Past Speakers And Participating Companies.

Subject To Change Without Prior Notice


What are smart cities? Why are so many startups active in this sector now and what are the forces driving their expansion? These are the questions we answer on day 1 of our immersion program on The Future of Smart Cities. We explain how early-stage companies have capitalized on economic, demographic and technological trends to reimagine urban spaces for the 21st century. We see these dynamics in practice with visits to companies such as: Houzz, an online platform for architecture and design, Chargepoint, an open electric vehicle charging network and Aurora, a self-driving vehicle manufacturer. Other possible participating companies: Lunera, Sunpreme, Airxsys, Compology, Replate.


The journey continues on day two with an exploration of the limits of the smart cities space as they exist today. How many areas of urban life are being disrupted? What is the nature of this change and how fast is it moving? We answer these questions through visits to startups operating in a wide range of niches. Possible visits include Katerra, a startup seeking to digitize building construction and design, Optiyol, a provider of solutions for transport planning, and Savari, where teams build advanced wireless sensor hardware and software technologies for autonomous cars and smart city infrastructure. Other possible participating companies: Biocellection, Baswood, Carmanation, Cobalt Technologies, Lime, Venima.


Day three of the immersion program is dedicated to the technologies fueling the smart cities revolution. We hear from experts in artificial intelligence and machine learning, robotics, mobile platforms and internet of things to learn what these technologies can currently do and what they will offer in the future. We visit companies such as Auro Robotics, TopHatch, and Pony where they show us how they use emerging technologies to create competitive advantages and provide innovative, market-disrupting products and services. Other possible participating companies: Davra, Trolysis, Solpro, Epic CleanTec, Recology.


Having seen and heard on days 1 to 3 how digital technologies are creating the city of the future, on day 4 of our immersion program we challenge attendees to turn words into action. Participatory workshops with leading Silicon Valley experts on design thinking, design sprints, venture capital and open innovation provide executives with the blueprints and frameworks they need to deliver innovation within their own organization. We survey Silicon Valley’s major tech firms to understand how they will make a play for the future of the city thanks to the huge amount of data they hold on consumers. We visit companies such as Amazon, Apple, Google, Samsung and Microsoft to illustrate these trends and learn how other large enterprises can follow their models of continuous innovation. Other possible participating companies: Uber, Tesla, IBM, Waze, Waymo.


What’s next for the connected city? Day 5 brings the program to a close with its sights firmly set on the future. We learn about trends still in their infancy and meet the companies seeking to capitalize on those trends. Possible visits include Nuleaftech, a pioneer in water recycling; Aptonomy, builders of AI-powered drone security; and Moovit, a mobility-as-a-service provider. Will city dwellers eventually have no need to own cars because autonomous vehicles have become ubiquitous and reliable? Will our homes be powered exclusively by clean energy? We discuss these and other pressing questions in the field of smart cities and find out which areas of our lives will be reimagined next thanks to emerging technologies. Other possible participating companies: Skip Scooters, Remix, Anagy, Armageddon Energy, Purfresh, Peloton.

Why Should I Join?


Meet the Silicon Valley innovators passionate about using the latest technologies to create new value. Learn the frameworks and methodologies of the experts and embrace innovation with confidence.

Long-term value

Apply newly learned innovation skills to your own company to ensure its survival and prosperity in times of technological disruption.


Turn motivation and knowledge into concrete actions with the business development opportunities that make an established business a world-class innovator.

Technology insights

See the disruptive power of the latest technologies and learn how they are being applied to solve humanity’s greatest challenges.


Gain insight into the digital disruption of consumer packaged goods and see how startups are applying emerging technologies to redesign how, where and what we buy.

New perspectives

Challenge your thinking on what it means to run an enterprise in the 21st century. Make innovation part of your personal mission and commit to the future of your business.

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SMART Cities: the Future of Urban Development at Silicon Valley Innovation Center

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