A Bidirectional Research Method to Design a Smart City Evaluation System


  • Renata Dameri University of Genoa, Italy https://orcid.org/0000-0002-4954-2121
  • Monica Bruzzone Department of Economics and Business, University of Genoa, Italy




This paper develops a two-way research method – both top-down and bottom-up – to define a “standard but tailored” assessment framework for smart cities, based on shared smart city concepts, but designed to respond to different needs of each city. The method aims not to design a measurement standard, but to define a process able to create the best smart city measurement system. It is based on a standard framework but tailored on each city – with its own features, problems, values, and ideas about the quality of life. This method overcomes the limitations of using standard framework, as it links smart city assessment tools to local policies but giving to the tool the authoritativeness deriving from the scientific literature and the robustness acquired from international nest practices. An empirical implementation supports the theoretical background and allows to validate the method, as it has been successfully implemented in Genoa, a medium-sized city in Italy looking for its own performance measurement system that allows comparison with other smart cities at the same time. The bidirectional method is designed by the authors of this paper, and it is a novelty in the international literature about research methodology for business and management studies.