In the UK, we have largely built our towns and cities, so a better question might be: 'How could we enhance our cities by overlaying a digital layer?' This layer, spread over the physical, helps us to understand our cities better and create services that allow citizens to interact with the city - and each other - differently.
Smart cities have won a lot of headlines recently with various independent projects popping up. But what about the possibility of a smart Europe? As the phenomenon picks up momentum the EU is trying to accelerate smart city deployment across the region by aiding development of open standards that aim to help manage data flow in cities by 2020.
What does this year hold for the urban innovation agenda in the UK? Like many others, I completely failed to predict the Brexit vote or the Trump Presidency. But I'm having another go at the crystal ball gazing this year because I still think it's useful to speculate about - and prepare for - the future. So, here are my five predictions for UK cities in 2017.
As the work begins and the dust starts to settle on this year's Autumn Statement, I think we can see it as a real shot in the arm for infrastructure, R&D and innovation. These measures should see a real return in terms of productivity and growth. They should, too, help the UK keep up in telecomms developments. And they present a great opportunity to push even harder on urban innovation, so our companies can continue to develop and sell world-beating products and services that help cities thrive.
The pace of urbanization globally is unprecedented - by 2050 nearly 66% of the world's population is expected to be urban. The ability to effectively manage this rapid urbanization is critical. Cities must find new ways to increase the efficiency of existing and new infrastructure and services to a level never previously achieved.
The phrase "Cities of the Future" conjures up so many different images, from the utopia of The Jetsons to the dystopia of Judge Dredd. But one thing that most agree on is the connected nature of our cities, with every aspect of life being connected to the internet, machines communicating with machines and with us.
When you live in a capital it's easy to complain about the big things that are broken, but since visiting all these Second Cities, I'm excited for them in a way I'm not about London. Second Cities will have to figure out how to best harness what they have and keep people loving what's great about them.
Making the City Playable conference in September and will run for two months. From now and until then we will work with the creators to question, explore and make the most engaging, surprising, thoughtful project we can. I love how much this project moves on the notion of a Playable City and look forward to demonstrating again that playful city interventions can be more than just fun.
Smart Cities are hot news with many examples where innovation and technology have been drivers of growth and sustainability. But are Smart Cities heading for an 'Uncanny Valley' where the lack of consultation with citizens can lead to alienation and rejection by the very people that these initiatives are designed to help?