India: Feasibility Study: National Urban Innovation Project

The Grantee invites submission of qualifications and proposal data (collectively referred to as the “Proposal”) from interested U.S. firms that are qualified on the basis of experience and capability to execute a Feasibility Study for the India National Urban Innovation Project.

Project Background

Aligning with India’s national policy objectives to promote inclusive and sustainable development in urban spaces, the Government of India is vigorously pursuing the implementation of Smart City initiatives. At present, there are 100 cities incorporated within the flagship Smart Cities Mission, India’s national initiative to build inclusive cities that promote quality living and environmental sustainability through technology.

The grantee, India’s Ministry of Housing and Urban Affairs (“MoHUA”), is a primary stakeholder in India’s Smart Cities Mission. Through digital and institutional infrastructure development, MoHUA intends to concurrently promote the Smart Cities Mission while addressing India’s modern urban challenges across all of India’s cities and urban areas. MoHUA’s solution will highlight three main strategic areas:

• Capacity building;
• Data-driven governance; and
• Innovation.

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India: Feasibility Study: National Urban Innovation Project

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Capacity building is critical for Indian urban governments to solve issues of understaffing, inadequate leadership and management skills, and a lack of digital tools and skills. Data-driven governance will be enabled through the creation of a data ecosystem that supports performance measurements, outcome measurement frameworks, and evidence-based urban planning. Finally, innovation is a priority to develop sustainable, cost-effective, and community-centric solutions to increasingly complex urban problems.

To achieve these objectives, MoHUA intends to pursue the National Urban Innovation Project. This concept was developed as a collaboration between MoHUA and the World Bank, and a detailed concept of the project has been published by the World Bank. The concept consists of the National Urban Innovation Hub (“NUIH”) and National Urban Innovation Stack (“NUIS”). NUIH and NUIS will comprise two parallel and mutually compatible infrastructure and platform components under MoHUA.

The NUIH concept will be an overarching institutional structure under which several sub-institutions will drive adoption of technologies, facilitate innovation in smart city development at the local level, develop human resources, and encourage participatory governance. MoHUA envisions that under NUIH, several sub-institutions will be created.

Paralleling the institutional focus of NUIH, MoHUA intends to develop a cloud-based platform structure called the National Urban Innovation Stack (“NUIS”). The NUIS will be a digital platform meant to integrate and enhance the capabilities of urban institutions,
platforms, and actors across sectors, with the goal of promoting capacity building, data-driven governance, and innovation. The platform will represent a collection of cloud-based services that will drive the integration of all digital ecosystem participants, digital and physical assets, and goods and services by providing increased capabilities across multiple urban sectors. It will encourage data-driven governance by integrating state-of-the-art physical and digital technologies including Geographic Information Systems (GIS), Internet of Things (IoT), sensors, Artificial Intelligence (AI), and Machine Learning for data collation, analysis, dissemination, and learning. The NUIS will simultaneously drive system innovation throughout the digital ecosystem by providing open standards and specifications that can be evolved over time. Through its broad integrative capabilities, the NUIS will ultimately provide the foundation for wide-scale deployment of smart city infrastructure in India.

About the Grantee

India’s Ministry of Housing and Urban Affairs (“MoHUA”) is the federal ministry responsible for overseeing areas of policy, regulation, and programming concerning housing and urban affairs throughout the country. Since it was launched in 2015, MoHUA has been integrally involved in the planning and execution of the Smart Cities Mission, for which it spearheaded the selection process for 100 Smart Cities.

About the Study

  1. Review current documents (vision, mission, charter, goals, studies, other project reports, etc.) that have been developed for capacity building, data-driven governance and innovation.
  2. Document the AS-IS model for this initiative and create the roadmap to achieve the three set focus areas (capacity building, innovation, data-driven governance)
  3. Prepare a TO-BE model that also outlines the institutional structures and organogram for them.
    a. Create an implementation plan that is scalable to meet the short-term and long-term goals of the Smart City initiative. This is to include platform structures and scale-up plan for them.
  4. Detailed Implementation Roadmaps (DIR) for institutions and platforms envisaged.
  5. Conduct other analysis, as required.

The U.S. firm selected will be paid in U.S. dollars from a $1,500,059 grant to the Grantee from the U.S. Trade and Development Agency.