Smart cities lookout Hitachi

This is the third post in a series on Smart Cities, Dana Cary and Julie Claar are with our Firm as interns in the summermonths and will deliver their findings on our blog.

  Dana Cary, HOLTROP S.L.P. Transaction & Business Law  

Smart city: Hitachi, Japan

Whether you´ve noticed or not, change is happening all around us due to urbanization.  People´s values are shifting—the consumer attitude of wanting to excessively own superficial materials is slowly fading into a less restrictive attitude of wanting to have less and do more.    The environment is also changing, and the issue of global warming is a perfect example of this.   These two seemingly unrelated dimensions of life—our societal values and the environment—are very dynamic and interdependent.   When one changes, so does the other.

With this change comes an enormous pressure for our cities to become smarter.    And one of the leading cities in this smart movement is Hitachi, Japan. 


Hitachi´s vision in becoming a smart city is simple yet profound.  Unlike most smart cities that prioritize going green and saving the environment over all other aspects of life, Hitachi´s emphasis is on balancing “going green” with living an affluent, efficient, and enjoyable urban lifestyle.   

One of the central aspects of Hitachi´s vision is that of open communication, connectedness, and information flow.   Residential homes will have control panels that control everything from kitchen appliances, to outdoor sprinklers, to electronic devices such as TV´s and computers.   Offices will be connected with homes; schools will be connected with entertainment venues.   The city of Hitachi will be free-flowing and revolutionary, constantly developing with the influx of new, easily accessible, innovative information. 

But what´s it like living in such an advanced, almost alien, lifestyle?  Will the world be filled with flying cars, time machines, and ice cream that never melts?  Not quite! Check out this informative and comical link that portrays a typical day for a family living in a smart city.