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From steel to high tech The Pittsburgh model of economic reinvention VIDEO

Digital Economy | Smart Cities

Cities worldwide are considering ways to better leverage information and communication technologies (ICTs) to enhance, or even rebuild, economic growth.

The United States’ city of Pittsburgh can offer some interesting lessons in that regard, suggests Pittsburgh Mayor Bill Peduto, who recently detailed his city’s efforts to use tech to reinvent its economy during a keynote speech at the recent AI for Good Global Summit at ITU’s headquarters in Geneva, Switzerland.

As we prepare for the ‘4th Industrial Revolution,’ in which billions of connected devices with unprecedented processing power will transform systems of production and economies, it is in places like Pittsburgh where lessons from the past will pave the way for significant advances, argues Mr. Peduto.

As a lead city of the 2nd Industrial Revolution in which electricity was able to create massive amounts of steel, Pittsburgh had to work for decades afterward to solve problems it had created, such as polluted air, poisonous water and a massive disparity between the “haves” and the “have-nots,” said Peduto.

“As we go into this next 4th Industrial Revolution, we can take lessons from places like Pittsburgh to assure that we don’t make the same mistakes twice and are putting in place policies that will minimize the negative impacts,” said Peduto at the recent AI for Good Global Summit.


To truly make Pittsburgh a city for all, a resiliency plan that looks out over the next 50 years has been put in place.


“Cities are like people: We have to plan for what could and may happen.” – Bill Peduto, Mayor of Pittsburgh

From Pre-K programs to affordable housing and investments in the public transit system to green infrastructure, Peduto strongly believes that technology such as AI can be used in practical ways and will be effective in delivering results.

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