Smart Cities New York Report

May 22, 2019

Smart City New York 2019 was a very inspiring event! People from all over the world came together to discuss how cities cope with growing population and demand for more sustainable solutions.



Circular Economy upcoming in the US

Especially in the big metropolitan cities with older infrastructures it’s a challenge to make cities cleaner, more accessible and more resilient to high temperatures and floods. Renewable energy, renewed waste management, better design for re-use and recycling, composting, re-use of resources in the cities and projects that stimulate biodiversity seem to be the main topics for the transition of New York City. This cannot go without data and IT platforms to mobilize people and provide valuable information on the supply chain and infrastructure. Financing the projects may be one of the biggest challenges as many of the initiatives are depending on private capital and private investments. Smart City New York provided a platform to exchange knowledge between cities and to introduce companies with circular technologies or solutions to the US-market.

The Dutch participation was an excellent example of public private collaboration. Thanks to Dutch government organizations like RVO and the Dutch Consulate NY, Dutch cities, knowledge institutes and businesses were introduced to the local market whilst Amsterdam, Rotterdam and Eindhoven took the lead on the topics Circular Economy, Resilience and Mobility.

City of Amsterdam leaded the Circular Economy track, Holland Circular Hotspot moderated and co-organized the Circular Economy Workshop on the 13th May in Cornell Tech.

Circular Economy Workshop May 13th, Cornell Tech

Overall more than 60 persons signed up for the workshop on Circular Economy. Goal of the workshop was to inspire, share knowledge and ideas, and identify potential business partners. Moderator of the Workshop Ruben Dubelaar introduced the concept of Circular Economy in general and some Dutch best practices. Amsterdam, who won the World Smart City Award for circular economy in 2017, presented their plan how to become fully circular by the year 2050.


After a general introductions the participants were divided in four groups to join table experts from Holland to discuss the following topics:


  1. IDENTIFY: waste to resource opportunities in a circular economy

Moderators: AMS Institute / AMS Institute and Metabolic


  1. DESIGN: Designing energy-neutral, smart and beautiful circular buildings

Moderator: Solarix


  1. COLLABORATE: Residual waste and logistics. Make them circular for a smart, sustainable and livable city

Moderators: Amsterdam Smart City and ZeroWaste Foundation


  1. DIGITALIZE: Amsterdam as circular smart city: data for a circular economy

Moderator: CTO office Amsterdam

The outcomes of the workshops were presented to the Circular Innovation Managers of Amsterdam City.

A second and third ‘Dutch workshop’ was organized by the City of Rotterdam and City of Eindhoven, focusing on resilience in the city and Mobility. Many topics of Circular Economy and Resilience were interchangeable. During the resilience workshop topics like Smartroof 2.0 and floating neighborhood Schoonschip were presented and discussed. First pilot versions of Smartroof are displayed at Randall’s Island in NY and Space and Matter has presented their solutions for the Red Hook district in NY.


During the day tours were organized around the campus of Cornell Tech.

Smart City Conference and Expo May 14th and 15th

Holland pavilion

A Holland pavilion provided a foothold for the Dutch delegation during the Smart City Conference and Expo. An area to meet people and to organize a number of pitch sessions to promote the members of the Dutch delegation. Delegation leaders Minister Kasja Ollongren and Henk de Jong (PBLQ) supported the Dutch delegation. On Tuesday the Circular Economy participants took the stage to pitch their product or service to the audience.


CE related panels at the conference:

  • Smart City Nation: The Netherlands.
    by Minister of the Interior and Kingdom Relations, Kasja Ollongren
  • The Circular City and the promise of Circular Data
  • Closing the Loop, Advancing A circular economy
  • The Circular City in practice, by AMS Institute and Metabolic

Several meetings and side events on Circular Economy

Sunday 12thof May

Kick off event at the Dutch Consulate with the Dutch delegation


Monday 13thof May: Evening meet up at the Hub:

There are No Sustainable Materials – Panel Discussion organized by the Circular Economy Network New York (CEN).


Tuesday 14thof May: Meeting with New York State Government at the Dutch Consulate

A part of the delegation met with NYSERDA. NYSERDA is the main driver on the New York on the path to carbon neutrality, under the Governor’s Green New Deal.


Tuesday 14thof May: Matchmaking event at Spaces

Matchmaking event organized by the Dutch Consulate and RVO at Spaces. One hour of speeddating session was organized for Dutch participants and relevant stakeholders from New York, like New York City Mayors Office and Closed Loop Partners.