Type 1: Commercial partnership

Sector of the company/organisation


Name of activity/project (or solution offered)

Smarter Cities Challenge

Relevant urban sustainability topic

social economy (unemployment, education, diversity, inclusive economy,…)

Start year


End year


Brief project summary

During a three-week period in May and June of 2012, a team of six IBM experts worked in Málaga at the request of Mayor Francisco de la Torre Prados, to deliver recommendations around key issues on economic sustainability as identified by the City Council.

Short activity description

Faced with an unemployment rate of over 30% - well above the national average, despite excellent transportation infrastructure, strong university presence, and designation as a science and technology focus region - the City of Málaga and Mayor Francisco de la Torre have requested IBM's ideas for promoting economic development and improving the business environment for entrepreneurs and businesses to come to the city. The Mayor’s challenge to the team was to develop a framework for a sustainable economy through actionable recommendations designed to enhance competitiveness.

What are the main lessons learned during implementation?

Málaga has a strong baseline of assets and advantages, as well as a vibrant culture and strong leadership. In order to optimize Málaga’s competitiveness, all stakeholders need to participate in a unified strategy and approach. Inherent to this new way of working will be the need for a coordinated effort and a strong governance system to ensure alignment with a single strategic plan. Critical to monitoring progress, Málaga needs to track key performance indicators and benchmark its progress. A single brand for the City will help Málaga more effectively communicate its strengths and target potential visitors and businesses effectively.


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