Future Ready Cities

Digitalization is a trend that is increasingly permeating urban systems, making it a defining issue for the future of cities. Digital payments in particular, have proven to be an essential element of urban resilience and future readiness, enabling cities to increase financial and digital inclusion, respond to the population’s needs effectively and efficiently and generate key data for decision making.

Explore our program website to learn more about how cities are taking action today.

Why is digital transformation essential in building resilience?

Digital transformation is a key enabler of urban resilience. Future-ready digital solutions can increase the adaptiveness of city management by shortening the time to acquire and respond to information, or by increasing digital access and inclusion for people and businesses.

Future Ready Cities

Citizens are moving to cities to prosper from commercial and economic activities. The expected population explosion, combined with the bustling, fast paced life of cities will make them vulnerable to a number of challenges in the shape of acute shocks and stresses.

Discover some of city’s most pressing challenges explored through a digital resilient economy lens.

Urbanization is expected to reach 70% globally by 2050

Urban population growth can increase a city’s vulnerability to shocks and stresses

Cities are building resilience to withstand any shock or stress

Digital transformation is a key enabler of resilience

Digitization and Resilience for the Cities of Tomorrow

Today, digital payments are an essential element of urban resilience and future readiness, enabling cities to prosper, to withstand shocks and stresses, and to serve the needs of the entire population.

As we move towards these new trends, city residents are increasingly demanding better services that enhance their quality of life. Examples include paying for public transportation, powering small businesses, or receiving tax refunds.

However, to ensure that these solutions power cities effectively, inclusive digital finance options must be accessible to all especially the vulnerable and marginalized population who frequently lack access to traditional banking and finance. Currently, city governments are working on strengthening digital economies to deliver more efficient and effective services while making them more accessible to all citizens, to unlock economic and social benefits and to become better prepared to adapt, survive and prosper when facing future shocks and stresses.

The Partnership

As leaders in urban resilience and digital solutions, Resilient Cities Network and Visa joined forces in 2020 to collaborate with cities to identify challenges and co-create transformative digital economy solutions to support the development of future-ready resilient cities.

The Future Ready Cities program builds urban resilience through education and pilot digital finance solutions, created for cities and with cities. It aims to empower network cities and to demonstrate the power of these solutions for cities everywhere.

What is urban resilience?

What is urban resilience?

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Why is digital transformation essential in building resilience?

Why is digital transformation essential in building resilience?

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Why should cities make digitalization more inclusive?

Why should cities make digitalization more inclusive?

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What is a Robust Data Foundation?

What is a Robust Data Foundation?

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What is the Future Ready Cities program?

What is the Future Ready Cities program?

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Explore Urban Challenges

Cities face a number of challenges in the shape of acute shocks and stresses. Shocks include disasters, disease outbreaks etc., while stresses can manifest in the form of economic vulnerabilities, social injustices and compromised management systems.

Digital transformation allows cities to prepare for such challenges, in the case of disasters (through early warning data enabled forecast systems) or improving citizen involvement (through digital platforms) among others while also unlocking important co-benefits for the development and growth of local populations and economies, helping to close the digital gap and other inequality scenarios.

Discover digital practical solutions for some of the most pressing urban challenges:

Challenge 1 - Increasing Speed and Efficiency Square - RCN

Increasing speed and efficiency of government payments

Homepage - Challenge 2 Square - RCN
Reaching sustainable, effective and user-friendly urban mobility systems
Homepage - Challenge 3 Square - RCN
Making good use of city data for better informed decision making
Challenge 4 -Local Economies & SMEs Square - RCN
Reactivating local economies through SMEs
Challenge 5 - Government Capacities Square- RCN
Strengthening government public service capacities
Challenge 1 - Increasing Speed and Efficiency Square - RCN

Increasing speed and efficiency of government payments

Homepage - Challenge 2 Square - RCN

Reaching sustainable, effective and user-friendly urban mobility systems

Homepage - Challenge 3 Square - RCN

Making good use of city data for better informed decision making

Challenge 4 -Local Economies & SMEs Square - RCN

Reactivating local economies through SMEs

Challenge 5 - Government Capacities Square- RCN
Strengthening government public service capacities

More Resources

Urban Exchange Podcast | Episode 17: Digitalizing government disbursements to enhance urban resilience featuring Visa and Washington D.C.

Urban Exchange Podcast | Episode 17: Digitalizing government disbursements to enhance urban resilience featuring Visa and Washington D.C.

The conversation is set in the context of the new publication titled “Government Disbursements and Urban Resilience. A practitioner’s point of view”, developed by Resilient Cities Network and edited by Visa Global Government Solutions in the context of their common program “Future Ready Cities”. Agustin, one of the co-authors of the publication, takes us through how digitalization of government disbursements can make their reach to vulnerable families and communities more efficient, inclusive and resilient. Robert shares experiences from Washington D.C, and examples of how digital payouts has enhanced its existing grandparents’ caregivers’ programs through pre-paid cards to support kinship caregiving.

Government Disbursements and Urban Resilience: A Practitioner’s Point of View

Government Disbursements and Urban Resilience: A Practitioner’s Point of View

Governments play a central role in supporting economically vulnerable residents and businesses through state-disbursed funds. Government disbursements like unemployment benefits and small business grants can help alleviate economic stress, create new opportunities, and increase social and economic inclusion. This publication aims to share advanced and practice-focused knowledge about government disbursement through a resilience lens for city officials, urban stakeholders and interested audiences worldwide.

Digital Payments for Urban Resilience: Key Learnings from Cities 

Digital Payments for Urban Resilience: Key Learnings from Cities 

The Future Ready Cities program aims to inspire cities around the world to harness the power of digital solutions to face their urban challenges.

From 2020-22, the program supported Guadalajara, Mexico; Quito, Ecuador; and Salvador, Brazil, to implement digital payment solutions that improve public transportation experiences, support urban farmers, and improve digital and financial literacy for women. In 2023, Montevideo and Panama City embarked on their own journey to advance urban resilience through digital solutions.

Speaker Series 2023 #9 | Leveraging Payment Data: Public-private Collaboration to Build a More Resilient Urban Future

Speaker Series 2023 #9 | Leveraging Payment Data: Public-private Collaboration to Build a More Resilient Urban Future

The ninth session of Cities on the Frontline Speaker Series, 2023, with the support of Visa, focused on how cities can utilize payment data through responsible public–private data collaboration to strengthen multiple city systems, solve multiple challenges and secure a more resilient future.
We were joined by Tulsi Parida, Global Director of Government Data Solutions, Visa; Silvina Di Giano, Tourism Research Manager, General Directorate of Market Intelligence and Observatory, Buenos Aires City Tourism Board; and Dr. Ahmad Giffari, Senior Urban Economic Development Planner, Bappeda DKI Jakarta experts who shared diverse lessons learned and experiences on the opportunities that aggregated payment data can bring to cities. 

Cities on the Frontline Speaker Series 2023 #7 | Urban Mobility: Innovating Through Payments

Cities on the Frontline Speaker Series 2023 #7 | Urban Mobility: Innovating Through Payments

Cities are facing growing challenges in the seventh session of Cities on the Frontline Speaker Series 2023 with the support of and in partnership with Visa,
we dove into how urban mobility is the backbone of a city, as it enables people to access vital spaces for work, education, and leisure. Open payments allow people to use any contactless credit or debit payment card to pay for transportation rides making it more efficient, safe and time effective improving rider experience and incentivizing financial and digital inclusion.

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