Technology has the power to transform cities around the world. Industry analyst, Michael Krigsman, talks with Mastercard's Miguel Gamiño, Jr. about opportunities to improve the lives of citizens everywhere. 

Miguel Gamiño, Jr. Biography

Miguel Gamiño Jr. Joined Mastercard as Executive Vice President for Global Cities in May 2018. Miguel Gamiño, Jr. is the Former Chief Technology Officer for the City of New York under the leadership of Mayor Bill de Blasio.

As CTO of NYC, he led major technology initiatives for the city including developing a meaningful and innovative Smart City and “Internet of Things” (IoT) strategy in collaboration with City agencies and departments; and leading the City’s Broadband Program with agencies, private industry and academia aimed at fulfilling Mayor de Blasio’s promise to provide every New Yorker and NYC business access to affordable, reliable, high-speed broadband service in all of New York by 2025.

Prior to NYC, Mr. Gamiño served as the City Chief Information Officer and Executive Director of the Department of Technology for the City and County of San Francisco. His team and colleagues brought “broadband” to the mainstream conversation and charted the course for a connected city of the future.

As an industry technologist, Mr. Gamiño participates in thought-leadership conversations with global colleagues, emphasizing the significance of pervasive broadband connectivity and the value of disrupting civic services through digital transformation.

He is a proud recipient of 2017 HITEC 100, 2016 State IT Executive of the Year, 2016 Top 25 Doers, Dreamers and Drivers, and 2016 Top 21 Inspiring CIOs on Twitter. 2015 CIO 100 award from CIO Magazine, and Top 20 Social CIO by Forbes Magazine, and Top 100 Social CIOs by Huffington Post in 2015 and 2016.

Transcript

Michael Krigsman: We're speaking with somebody who is right in the center of smart cities and ecosystems around cities. Miguel Gamiño is the executive vice president for global cities at Mastercard. It's certainly a name that we all know. Hey, Miguel. Welcome to CXOTalk.

Miguel Gamiño: Thanks. It's great to be here. Looking forward to a good, lively chat.

About Mastercard and Cities

Michael Krigsman: Miguel, tell us about your role at Mastercard. I think everybody knows who Mastercard is, but what's the connection with cities?

Miguel Gamiño: Actually, I want to make one point about Mastercard that I didn't even fully appreciate until I joined the organization. We're actually perceived sometimes differently than how we really operate. We're a technology company in the payments industry particularly interested in growth that occurs in an inclusive way.

As an organization, that really lines up with the role that I have to lead our engagement and strategy with cities globally. Literally, in every part of the world, Mastercard is present in a substantial way in something like 210 countries all over the planet.

Michael Krigsman: This notion of global cities, obviously it ties into inclusiveness. Please elaborate on that intersection for us.

Miguel Gamiño: Yeah, I think urbanization is something that's being talked a lot about now. Something like six million people are moving into cities on a very regular basis, I think, monthly. That's the size of Singapore. More than 55% of the world's population lives in urban centers and projected to grow to something like 70% by 2050.

That urbanization, that growth is happening. That part is real. I think what we need to focus on collectively is how to make sure that that growth happens inclusively so everybody who lives, works, visits cities can enjoy the progress being made in those cities across the board. It's about making sure that the future that is bright that we all are working towards and hopeful of reaches everybody across cities around the world and within the cities across all the communities.

The Challenge of Cities

Michael Krigsman: Why is this such a challenging and difficult problem to solve?

Miguel Gamiño: Well, I think cities everywhere in the world are faced with limited resources; again, this growing impact on their infrastructure. Frankly, also, growing increasing expectations. People are expecting more from the cities that they live in and the governments are trying to address those challenges with competing priorities, limited resources, and I think partnerships are the way to really leverage the superpower of collaboration to help cities achieve those goals, which are our goals, to deliver a better quality of life for everyone in those cities.

Michael Krigsman: The solution then lies somewhere in this domain of collaboration. I know you use the term "ecosystems" as well.

Miguel Gamiño: Yeah. We have to work together. By "we," I mean the governments themselves, truthfully even the people in these communities themselves, alongside the private sector, industry players, academia, the broader NGO community, and all of these organizations and industries that are working on inclusive growth outcomes and helping address urbanization. I think the whole is greater than the sum of the parts when we come together, identify those real challenges by the people living them, and leverage all of the resources available to us across those segments to build what I think will not only be better solutions that better meet the needs of people because they are informed by the cities themselves and the people that live in those cities themselves, but do so in a robust and sustainable way because we've got the other segments playing a vital role in that discussion and in the solution development along the way.

Michael Krigsman: Miguel, I know you're involved with something called City Possible. Would you share what is that and what's the vision behind it? Then let's unpack what you're actually trying to do and how you're going about it. What's the execution plan?

Miguel Gamiño: Yeah, sure. City Possible is something that has been pioneered by Mastercard but invites a collection of network partners to play a role in working out better solutions to these urban challenges. It is the vision, the strategy, the intent to create the world's largest network of cities working together to address these challenges.

We are doing that through partnerships. It might be Mastercard led, but it's not Mastercard only, again, because that's the important element of better solutions. It is creating a space, a place virtually and in real life, for cities to come together to talk about what those common challenges are, to have input from academia and the NGO community, and have the private industry players really engage in leveraging talent, resources, and other things available across the board to build those better outcomes.

When we continue to make progress towards creating that global network, we are finding trends. We're finding things that are of common concern across cities that are dispelling the notion that each city is the only city facing a particular challenge. The reality is that they're all working on many of the same issues.

Every mayor that I've worked for or spoken with are all trying to achieve the same thing that, frankly, we are focused on, which is a better quality of life for their community. They find that through different means, different angles given the priorities or the challenges of a particular community, whether that be public safety, jobs creation, better transit. There are different methods towards that same goal, but that goal is to create a better quality of life and inclusive prosperity for the people that live in those cities. That's what City Possible, at its core, aims to help achieve globally.

How to Build a Coalition to Support Cities

Michael Krigsman: I want to remind everybody; we're talking with Miguel Gamiño. He is the executive vice president for global cities at Mastercard. Miguel, bringing together this kind of unified front seems really foundational to what you're trying to do. I guess my question is, given the diversity among cities and their interest in the sizes and geographic locations and so forth, how do you do that? How do you even begin to draw those common grounds and bring people together into one cohesive coalition?

Miguel Gamiño: This is informed by my days, frankly, on the city side of this equation. As you know, but some viewers might not know, I previously served as the CTO of New York City, the CIO of San Francisco, the CIO of El Paso, Texas. Three very different cities but, along the way, it helped me identify that even though those cities are very different, they are struggling with and trying to achieve much of the same. That was a clue to me, while I was inside that part, in that industry, that this collaboration notion was not just a nice thing to print on a banner and hang on a wall somewhere as a concept but could actually mobilize better progress and acceleration to the solution.

As we're building this global network of cities, we've intentionally engaged with cities that look and feel different. We have 25 cities that have formally joined as founding members so far with many, many more cities in active stages of joining. That number is not static. It is growing pretty rapidly, but those cities represent every continent. They represent big cities that you have certainly heard of in this space like Dubai, Helsinki, Dublin, and San Diego. They represent smaller cities that you might not have heard of like Wollondilly in Australia.

I think that it's really important to collect a diversity of input if we want to create really robust, globally scalable solutions. That's what we're working towards. I'm very proud to say that, in a matter of months, we have begun to execute exactly on that goal and we are seeing responsiveness from cities.

I'm pretty optimistic. Mike, you know me pretty well from various different threads. I'm a pretty optimistic person. I have no shortage of capacity to think big. This has accelerated at a pace that even, to some degree, I hesitate to admit even surprises me.

Cities have really leaned in. Now we're receiving inbound interest by cities to join this movement, but also by industry partners. We have industry partners that aren't necessarily super obvious players in this cities ecosystem that have really begun to raise their hand and want to engage with us.

I think we're achieving that goal of creating that broad ecosystem that's really important to these goals, so it's happening. We had to certainly make investments and kickstart things, but now it's starting. The ball is rolling and we're seeing a lot of inbound interest.

Michael Krigsman: I have to say, this past week, I was present when you had a conversation with the chief technology officer for the City of Amsterdam.

Miguel Gamiño: Yes.

Michael Krigsman: He was really excited to work with you. You could just see the excitement, the passion, and the interest. It was very genuine.

Miguel Gamiño: Yes. No, Ger and I have known each other for many years, going back to, again, when I was in the industry, in the cities industry, as a CTO and CIO. There's a sense of not just comradery, although it does include that. There is a sense of the city CIOs and CTOs who are facing these challenges being there to support each other as they're thinking through how they make progress, but also recognizing that they can't do it even on their own, and so a recognition that there is an appropriate role for the private sector and academia, et cetera, to play in those solutions.

You see the CIOs and CTOs that are succeeding most often, I think, surround themselves with that ecosystem that helps them succeed because there's never enough time, there's never enough money. There's always too many challenges and too much bureaucracy. It's the classic thing.

The way that I was able to break through some of that when I was in those chairs is what we're now trying to mobilize very intentionally in partnership with those cities. Ger is a great example of that, as are the founding members' list. I would say each of those CIOs, CTOs would fit the same profile that they understand the value of the partnerships. They're really leaning into it with high expectations of it that the ecosystem helps them accomplish their goals and their mission. That's what we've created in a very short period of time.

Citizen and Customer Experience 

Michael Krigsman: I would like to shift the conversation slightly to the citizen perspective. Customer experience is an area that I'm so focused on. Maybe we should call it "citizen experience." To kick this off, we have a question from Sal Rasa on Twitter. "How do you help make this work visible to citizens? Can people participate and share your optimism?" so the role of citizens in communication.

Miguel Gamiño: Actually, my first response is to broaden it from citizens to people because sometimes it's citizens that you're delivering for; sometimes it's visitors. I think, thinking in general about how we can -- I have this hashtag, so I invite everyone to join that movement, which is, make tech work for people. That's really the crux of it, which is, how do we ensure that the technology or the solutions that are either being developed or need to be developed do so in a way that doesn't lose sight of the real objective, which is improving the quality of life for people who live and visit and operate, if you will, in cities?

Part of that, in some cities, is direct engagement. It's things like community meetings and whatnot. That isn't necessarily Mastercard's role to play but, again, that's the purpose of the ecosystem. There are people in that ecosystem or institutions, I should say, in that ecosystem whose role is to do the actual community engagement.

Not to say we don't want to participate. We're certainly supportive of that and engaged in those sorts of conversations, but just understanding that each party has a role to play. I think what we need to do is make sure that, as we build the technology, as we help create solutions, that the cities have a seat at the table that is also expected to represent the interests of the people that live in those cities so that we don't go and build solutions in a lab somewhere, in a vacuum, and potentially miss the mark on helping address real challenges for real people.

Then the flip side of it, to the question, is also helping the public understand that the value of that engagement is in their own interest. Meaning, if they want to ensure that the future and that urbanization occurs inclusively, then they should engage. They should engage with their city, with their representatives, with industry, and in whatever means available to them to help inform the thinking that goes into the progress that is planned for and executed against in these cities.

Michael Krigsman: Given the complexity of the city environment and the different interests--you know this, obviously, much better than I do but, just within a city, the income diversity, the ethnic diversity, the religious diversity, all of this--what makes you confident that Mastercard and City Possible can make an impact?

Miguel Gamiño: We're an organization with not only our own global scale, as I mentioned 210 countries. The other part is, when we talk about global, we don't talk about just the big cities around the world. As I already mentioned, we are engaging with cities of different kind of profile. That's consistent with Mastercard's current DNA, operating substantially in 210 counties. Our DNA is to be a network of partnerships. That is the way that the core business, if you will, operates.

In so many ways, I'm simply leveraging the strength of the DNA that already exists. Our global presence, our global footprint, our existing relationships with partners around the world, and just kind of doubling down on that in the cities space and saying, "It's not just Mastercard that can accomplish those goals. It's an ecosystem. It's the collection of partners and all the other stakeholder groups that have to be participants.

We've got global reach. We've got resources. We have engagement, partnerships, and relationships all over the world. We're bringing to bear those forces, those assets, and that expertise to help stimulate this trajectory, this progress of inclusive solutions built by the ecosystem collectively.

I think, again, I'm observing. I'm watching the interest, the growth, and the engagement happen at a pace that even optimistic Miguel is somewhat surprised by. Those theories are no longer theories. We're watching them take shape and build traction and momentum in the real world, in real time, at a very impressive pace.

Ecosystem and Partnering to Encourage Diversity

Michael Krigsman: This notion of the ecosystem and the partnering. You didn't use this term, but co-innovation or co-invention, co-creation with the cities, it sounds to me like this is really the bedrock on which you're building everything.

Miguel Gamiño: Absolutely. Absolutely. Listen; the organization, before I joined, accomplished some pretty substantial successes along with these concepts in a way that improved city operations and citizens or the public's experience. Our work in transit is a perfect example of that in London where, by engaging with other industry partners, by engaging with the Transport for London, the city agency itself, and creating something that now we call open loop payments, which basically just means that everyone can use a standard card they have in their pocket already and tap and ride the Tube in London.

That sounds like a relatively modest accomplishment but what it's delivered are pretty dramatic results. Transport for London has claimed themselves over 100 million pounds in annual savings. That's real money that can be reinvested in capacity or other improvements on the system. At the same time, they're enjoying an increase in ridership because the user experience is just better.

Now, we're having conversations with them about, how do we take that success that was pretty focused on a particular issue, how do we leverage the inputs, the recipe, if you will, to have similar outcomes that have the trifecta of victory, impact other parts of the transport business or other parts, even, of the city? I think the reason we get that trifecta is that we've involved those different parties in the co-creation of the solution. We were paying attention to the various priorities and challenges, risks, and opportunities from the various players in the co-creation. You get a better, substantial outcome as a result. We're taking that principle learning of good outcomes come from good approach and now finding other parts of the city ecosystem, other challenges that cities are dealing with, apply the same approach with the goal of accomplishing the same trifecta successes in other parts of the city ecosystem.

What are Smart Cities?

Michael Krigsman: We have another question from Twitter asking if you can weave in, as you've started to do, success stories from member cities. I'm going to ask you to do that in the context of smart cities. We hear that term, smart cities, and what is that? What does that have to do with what you're doing? It seems like there must be some connection, but it's not clear exactly what it is.

Miguel Gamiño: Let's chat a little bit about the term. We'll certainly come back to some specific examples that the audience is interested in, but I think it is first important, as you mentioned, to set the lay of the land.

Smart cities, I would be less uncomfortable with that if it at least was smarter cities, which would indicate a progression. To call it "smart cities" indicates, I think, or insinuates that there is a destination, that there is a moment in which you achieve this smart city designation. You put the stamp on your website and you call it a day and move on to something else.

In fact, I think the reality is that cities have been getting smarter through the application of technology since they were born. For centuries, cities have been getting better. They've been improving quality of life for the people that live there, visit there, or work there. That's what it really is all about.

I think that, in the current frame, we have a particular understanding of what technology means in this era, right? That is things like digitization, data, and those sorts of elements are what we call technology today. Before, it was roads [laughter] and things like that. Those were technological advancements, all of which were making cities smarter. That's, I think, just to reframe it as a journey and less of a perceived destination or accomplishment that people aspire to. I think it is a pathway that is ongoing and continuous.

I believe that City Possible, Mastercard, and our ecosystem of partners will absolutely play an important role in that because we have access to a lot of what I described as modern technology. We have had some specific examples of engaging with, for example, the City of Dublin, who is one of our very first founding members. They came to us in one of our discussions with a problem statement to better understand the impact on the local economy of certain things that either was in their control like policy decisions or things like that and even things that were not in their control like weather patterns and whatnot. Basically, they wanted to better understand what things impacted their economy positively and negatively.

We came to the table with them. Visualize this room. This is a room with the City of Dublin, people from Mastercard and the various parts of our business from the innovation and the labs people to the City's people to data and insights people, and partners, partners who are in the business of building insights dashboards and things like that. You brought all these people to the table.

By the way, this conversation, to some degree, being facilitated in our engagements with our academic partners. All of that to establish the problem statement and the ecosystem that can help address it.

Then a solution was built. It wasn't perfect straight out of the box, but we got to, we'll call it, MVP 1 or version one very, very rapidly. This conversation started in, I want to say, probably November of last year and this first solution was released and publicly announced and presented by the City of Dublin itself in February, I believe. Just in a pretty short period of time, we went from the point of first engagement to a legitimate proof of concept that has done two things. It has already delivered insight to the City of Dublin and also modified the problem statement.

Now, when you know more, then you know that you might know less. As you discover certain insights, then you start a new thread of curiosity for deeper insights that have already evolved.

The City of Dublin, sharing it with the City Possible network, has also inspired other cities who have similar but maybe slightly different need or curiosity for insights to raise their hand and say, "Well, I want to take that in this direction to build on top of the progress already made with one city and then branch it off into a potentially slightly different direction that is of interest to a different city," but always bringing those solutions back to one another so that they share in the progress made by one another.

That's a specific example with an early stage city in Dublin that the second city that I referred to is the city of Helsinki, who is actually the world's first city to join City Possible and has now observed what we did with Dublin. We're leaning in with them now to find slightly different answers to slightly different questions, but it's building on progress already made by one.

When this new kind of version of insights is developed with Helsinki, that very progress is then also available to Dublin in return. This is how they begin to help each other level up and notch up in terms of progress, which might be, frankly, the only way that city governments can accelerate to catch up with consumer expectations and the value proposition of current technology and keep up with that as it continues its exponential trajectory, if you will.

Partnering and Collaboration

Michael Krigsman: Okay. Again, I can see that, in a way, your role is facilitating those partnerships, information sharing, and collaboration opportunities. Would that be accurate?

Miguel Gamiño: Yeah, absolutely. It is facilitation, but it's also engagement. I am not philanthropic. I'm not simply the facilitator. We are creating a safe place where that facilitation happens and where cities can engage with each other without concern for outside interests, if you will. We're doing it in a way so that, when the city does engage with us, as I'd mentioned with Dublin or London and some others, that we're prepared, that we're not now trying to catch up with the discussion and figure out what you've been talking about for the last several months or years. Now we're prepared to engage, but it is giving significant deference to the cities who really own the problems and, frankly, as I mentioned before, represent the people that can stand to benefit or not from how the city uses technology to, as I say, make tech work for people.

Michael Krigsman: Of course, you have a background, having been CIO or CTO for three different cities, so you know the lay of the land. We have some questions from Twitter. We have a couple of different questions from Twitter, so let's jump to them right now. I'll just take them in order.

Number one, @MisterNova, and he says, "Data privacy: should the public sector be held to a higher standard than search engine firms that are allowed to resell consumer data?" What about the data privacy aspect in all of this?

Miguel Gamiño: We have published some principles on the topic. What I will tell you is that I think we hold privacy in high regard as an organization. We think it's paramount.

The city's role, though, I will say and how they feel about it, we are engaging with cities to help them think through how a city approaches privacy and other elements of the data world, but cities have to make many of those decisions. We're engaged as a thought partner. As an organization, we have our own principles that have been published that we can share afterward. In the city space or how it compares to search engines or what have you, I think that's an ongoing, active dialog that, again, is benefited by an ecosystem, by folks who have been thinking about this for a long time, to make sure that we do what we can to protect the privacy and the interests of the people that live in those cities. Absolutely.

Michael Krigsman: Okay. We have a question from Arsalan Khan. It's a good question. He says, "Are there tools, worksheets, anything else available for cities to become smart even though they aren't part of Mastercard's initiative?"

Miguel Gamiño: Joining City Possible is one part of the framework, for sure. We want to encourage cities to join so that they are actively engaged in the dialog. But we also have done lots of work with cities, again previous to this structure, this approach, and on an ongoing basis.

We do have things in different parts of the organization that helps cities accomplish their goals. We have lab environments, data environments, and toolkits that we can make available to cities. We have solutions that have been built around, as I mentioned, open loop payments and transit with partners that are available to cities, data insights platforms, things like that. All of those things are available to cities regardless of whether they've officially joined, you know, become part of the City Possible network piece, but we certainly want to try to engage with cities as holistically as possible, leveraging those tools, toolkits, and frameworks, and also bringing them into this network that helps them engage with one another.

Helping Cities in the Global South

Michael Krigsman: Okay. Great. We have another question from Twitter, a really interesting one. Angela Khakali says, "Do smart cities present a meaningful way to make growth in cities of the Global South sustainable, equitable, and inclusive? What are the opportunities and barriers? Can you speak to City Possible experience in this area?"

Miguel Gamiño: What's being referred to as a Global South are the emerging markets. Again, we're engaged with, in Brazil, Curitiba and Guarulhos. Brazil is obviously a large market with lots of development. Buenos Aires is another one. Inside of those cities, there are certainly pockets of emerging community and opportunity.

I'm coming up on a decade in this industry. I've witnessed a pivot to being focused on inclusive outcomes for the people that live there. We've been engaging with those communities; Buenos Aires is a developed city but has a community inside of that city, that needs to catch up with what's happened. The government, in our engagement with them, have particular focus on that and we have the ability to bring the ecosystem, solutions, and attention to those parts of cities in the Global South, just as a kind of representative term, to help those as they do develop that they, number one, benefit from the lessons learned ahead of them; take advantage of the current state of the art, so don't modernize to yesterday, but modernize to tomorrow; and do that in a way that can also, truthfully, provide a guiding light to some developed markets, some cities that can learn from new advancements that take place in that Global South to address pockets of lack of inclusion, if you will, inside of their own cities.

There is as much to be shared with the Global South is there is to be learned from it. I really truly believe that this global environment is absolutely a bidirectional victory. This is not about New York, Paris, Dubai of the world just teaching things to everybody else. There is as much to be learned in those cities from that Global South as there is to be shared with it. We've watched that happen in real time in many of the cities I've just mentioned.

Michael Krigsman: We're almost out of time, so let me ask you something if you can answer very quickly. Why do cities need a CIO or a CTO? I'll ask you just to answer that, please, really fast because there's another topic I just have to talk with you about.

Miguel Gamiño: Yeah. I think someone needs to be paying attention to the role technology plays in the city's future. You could call it whatever you want. The job title is less important than the role and the responsibly. That is because I think urbanization, technological transformation, a.k.a. disruption, is happening whether you are engaged with it or not. And so, I think, to have somebody who is paying attention to that is a really important ingredient to making sure that, as it happens in your community, it happens in the most positive manner, an inclusive manner, and engaging with other cities, with industry partners and selfishly, City Possible I think helps also substantiate that visibility and that approach to the use of technology in cities.

Advice for City Leaders

Michael Krigsman: Okay. Very good. We have just a short time left. I think it's important to talk about advice. Let's maybe begin. I know there are a few different dimensions here that we can discuss, but let's begin with how can smaller cities get involved? I think, for larger cities that get the attention, it's just so much easier in some respects. They have the resources.

Miguel Gamiño: Great question. This also kind of pulls on my previous experiences. When I was in El Paso, the story that I tell is, when I was in El Paso -- El Paso, by the way, is a big city. It's nearly the size, population-wise, of San Francisco. The metro area, including the Mexican side, is four million people, so it's no small community by any stretch, but it doesn't have the visibility that San Francisco or New York had.

I learned and developed along the way, but I had many of the same crazy ideas when I was in El Paso that became interesting when I was in San Francisco and became impossible to ignore when I was in New York just because of the scale that I represented changed. The industry's recognition of those crazy ideas and engagements changed also. Beyond just the power of collaboration, the diversity of collaboration was a lesson I learned through that process.

There are people in cities like El Paso, there are also people in cities that are even less well known in the Global South, as we previously referred, that have great ideas and are even doing great things. Small cities and big cities, it's an open invitation to join City Possible and let that help elevate your visibility to the industry partners and to each other.

I think that that one of the strengths that we offer is to provide that platform, and so every city in the world is invited to raise their hand to join us. CityPossible.com is one way of engaging with us. As you know, Mike, I'm on Twitter, LinkedIn, email. Just about every method, I'm readily available, as is my team. We are highly engaged and want to invite cities to use our platform to gain access to each other, to gain access to the industry, to increase visibility to the great ideas that exist everywhere in the world.

Michael Krigsman: Okay. In the spirit of moving along quickly because we're running out of time, we have a question from Twitter. It's actually the same question that I was going to ask for advice, so I'll just ask it from Twitter. I guess great minds think alike.

This is from Smart Cities Library who is asking, "How can City Possible and, in general, how can cities learn to incorporate knowledge and perspective of diverse and underserved communities including people with disabilities?"

Miguel Gamiño: Yeah. Great question. When we talk about inclusion, we mean it in that broad sense. This is about financial inclusion. It's about digital inclusion. It's about accessibility across the table.

I think that there are cities out there that have had the resources, capacity, whatever the reason, to really lead the way with accessibility and they are showing how important it is to really truly accomplish inclusive outcomes. I think that's important is to continue to highlight that. We do want to make sure that that focus is incorporated into the discussions that we're having and the solutions we're co-creating and scaling with cities.

I think it's also an opportunity for me; two questions I'd like to address in this thread: one is small city versus big city; and the other is, what city is the smartest, or what city has made the most progress? First of all, if you're a small city, find a big one. If you're a big city, find a small one.

The small cities tend to have strengths that big ones don't and vice versa. Small cities can move quickly. They have agility. They have different kinds of strengths. Big cities have often resources, scale, and attention from the industry. City Possible intends to bring all that together to take advantage of sharing those strengths across the board.

The other is about which cities made the most progress. Well, it depends on what they've been focused on. Different cities have made more progress in the area of transit mobility while other cities have made more progress in the area of accessibility, as was the question. Others have made more progress in the area of job creation and financial inclusion.

It depends on where they focus their resources.

Just like I told you the story about Dublin and Helsinki, this is the same. It is most important not to identify the smartest city. It is more important that we identify progress made in cities and share it between them so that they level each other up on all of those different kinds of areas of interest and priority. That is, I think, a pretty specific intent, objective, and opportunity that exists through this collaboration that we are very proud to facilitate and scale globally with City Possible.

Michael Krigsman: Miguel Gamiño, thank you so much for being with us today.

Miguel Gamiño: Thank you so much for having me. It's been great to have the conversation. Thank you for weaving in the Twitter questions. I look forward to having this dialog often and soon.

Michael Krigsman: Everybody, you have been watching Miguel Gamiño. He's the executive vice president for Global Cities at Mastercard. You can check them out using @CityPossible on Twitter. Miguel, as he said, is on Twitter.

Please subscribe on YouTube. Click that subscribe button. It really does help us. Subscribe to our newsletter at the top of the CXOTalk website. It says "Subscribe." Click and we'll keep you up to date.

Thank you so much, everybody. Have a great week. We will see you again soon. Bye-bye.

Michael Krigsman: We're speaking with somebody who is right in the center of smart cities and ecosystems around cities. Miguel Gamiño is the executive vice president for global cities at Mastercard. It's certainly a name that we all know. Hey, Miguel. Welcome to CXOTalk.

Miguel Gamiño: Thanks. It's great to be here. Looking forward to a good, lively chat.

About Mastercard and Cities

Michael Krigsman: Miguel, tell us about your role at Mastercard. I think everybody knows who Mastercard is, but what's the connection with cities?

Miguel Gamiño: Actually, I want to make one point about Mastercard that I didn't even fully appreciate until I joined the organization. We're actually perceived sometimes differently than how we really operate. We're a technology company in the payments industry particularly interested in growth that occurs in an inclusive way.

As an organization, that really lines up with the role that I have to lead our engagement and strategy with cities globally. Literally, in every part of the world, Mastercard is present in a substantial way in something like 210 countries all over the planet.

Michael Krigsman: This notion of global cities, obviously it ties into inclusiveness. Please elaborate on that intersection for us.

Miguel Gamiño: Yeah, I think urbanization is something that's being talked a lot about now. Something like six million people are moving into cities on a very regular basis, I think, monthly. That's the size of Singapore. More than 55% of the world's population lives in urban centers and projected to grow to something like 70% by 2050.

That urbanization, that growth is happening. That part is real. I think what we need to focus on collectively is how to make sure that that growth happens inclusively so everybody who lives, works, visits cities can enjoy the progress being made in those cities across the board. It's about making sure that the future that is bright that we all are working towards and hopeful of reaches everybody across cities around the world and within the cities across all the communities.

The Challenge of Cities

Michael Krigsman: Why is this such a challenging and difficult problem to solve?

Miguel Gamiño: Well, I think cities everywhere in the world are faced with limited resources; again, this growing impact on their infrastructure. Frankly, also, growing increasing expectations. People are expecting more from the cities that they live in and the governments are trying to address those challenges with competing priorities, limited resources, and I think partnerships are the way to really leverage the superpower of collaboration to help cities achieve those goals, which are our goals, to deliver a better quality of life for everyone in those cities.

Michael Krigsman: The solution then lies somewhere in this domain of collaboration. I know you use the term "ecosystems" as well.

Miguel Gamiño: Yeah. We have to work together. By "we," I mean the governments themselves, truthfully even the people in these communities themselves, alongside the private sector, industry players, academia, the broader NGO community, and all of these organizations and industries that are working on inclusive growth outcomes and helping address urbanization. I think the whole is greater than the sum of the parts when we come together, identify those real challenges by the people living them, and leverage all of the resources available to us across those segments to build what I think will not only be better solutions that better meet the needs of people because they are informed by the cities themselves and the people that live in those cities themselves, but do so in a robust and sustainable way because we've got the other segments playing a vital role in that discussion and in the solution development along the way.

Michael Krigsman: Miguel, I know you're involved with something called City Possible. Would you share what is that and what's the vision behind it? Then let's unpack what you're actually trying to do and how you're going about it. What's the execution plan?

Miguel Gamiño: Yeah, sure. City Possible is something that has been pioneered by Mastercard but invites a collection of network partners to play a role in working out better solutions to these urban challenges. It is the vision, the strategy, the intent to create the world's largest network of cities working together to address these challenges.

We are doing that through partnerships. It might be Mastercard led, but it's not Mastercard only, again, because that's the important element of better solutions. It is creating a space, a place virtually and in real life, for cities to come together to talk about what those common challenges are, to have input from academia and the NGO community, and have the private industry players really engage in leveraging talent, resources, and other things available across the board to build those better outcomes.

When we continue to make progress towards creating that global network, we are finding trends. We're finding things that are of common concern across cities that are dispelling the notion that each city is the only city facing a particular challenge. The reality is that they're all working on many of the same issues.

Every mayor that I've worked for or spoken with are all trying to achieve the same thing that, frankly, we are focused on, which is a better quality of life for their community. They find that through different means, different angles given the priorities or the challenges of a particular community, whether that be public safety, jobs creation, better transit. There are different methods towards that same goal, but that goal is to create a better quality of life and inclusive prosperity for the people that live in those cities. That's what City Possible, at its core, aims to help achieve globally.

How to Build a Coalition to Support Cities

Michael Krigsman: I want to remind everybody; we're talking with Miguel Gamiño. He is the executive vice president for global cities at Mastercard. Miguel, bringing together this kind of unified front seems really foundational to what you're trying to do. I guess my question is, given the diversity among cities and their interest in the sizes and geographic locations and so forth, how do you do that? How do you even begin to draw those common grounds and bring people together into one cohesive coalition?

Miguel Gamiño: This is informed by my days, frankly, on the city side of this equation. As you know, but some viewers might not know, I previously served as the CTO of New York City, the CIO of San Francisco, the CIO of El Paso, Texas. Three very different cities but, along the way, it helped me identify that even though those cities are very different, they are struggling with and trying to achieve much of the same. That was a clue to me, while I was inside that part, in that industry, that this collaboration notion was not just a nice thing to print on a banner and hang on a wall somewhere as a concept but could actually mobilize better progress and acceleration to the solution.

As we're building this global network of cities, we've intentionally engaged with cities that look and feel different. We have 25 cities that have formally joined as founding members so far with many, many more cities in active stages of joining. That number is not static. It is growing pretty rapidly, but those cities represent every continent. They represent big cities that you have certainly heard of in this space like Dubai, Helsinki, Dublin, and San Diego. They represent smaller cities that you might not have heard of like Wollondilly in Australia.

I think that it's really important to collect a diversity of input if we want to create really robust, globally scalable solutions. That's what we're working towards. I'm very proud to say that, in a matter of months, we have begun to execute exactly on that goal and we are seeing responsiveness from cities.

I'm pretty optimistic. Mike, you know me pretty well from various different threads. I'm a pretty optimistic person. I have no shortage of capacity to think big. This has accelerated at a pace that even, to some degree, I hesitate to admit even surprises me.

Cities have really leaned in. Now we're receiving inbound interest by cities to join this movement, but also by industry partners. We have industry partners that aren't necessarily super obvious players in this cities ecosystem that have really begun to raise their hand and want to engage with us.

I think we're achieving that goal of creating that broad ecosystem that's really important to these goals, so it's happening. We had to certainly make investments and kickstart things, but now it's starting. The ball is rolling and we're seeing a lot of inbound interest.

Michael Krigsman: I have to say, this past week, I was present when you had a conversation with the chief technology officer for the City of Amsterdam.

Miguel Gamiño: Yes.

Michael Krigsman: He was really excited to work with you. You could just see the excitement, the passion, and the interest. It was very genuine.

Miguel Gamiño: Yes. No, Ger and I have known each other for many years, going back to, again, when I was in the industry, in the cities industry, as a CTO and CIO. There's a sense of not just comradery, although it does include that. There is a sense of the city CIOs and CTOs who are facing these challenges being there to support each other as they're thinking through how they make progress, but also recognizing that they can't do it even on their own, and so a recognition that there is an appropriate role for the private sector and academia, et cetera, to play in those solutions.

You see the CIOs and CTOs that are succeeding most often, I think, surround themselves with that ecosystem that helps them succeed because there's never enough time, there's never enough money. There's always too many challenges and too much bureaucracy. It's the classic thing.

The way that I was able to break through some of that when I was in those chairs is what we're now trying to mobilize very intentionally in partnership with those cities. Ger is a great example of that, as are the founding members' list. I would say each of those CIOs, CTOs would fit the same profile that they understand the value of the partnerships. They're really leaning into it with high expectations of it that the ecosystem helps them accomplish their goals and their mission. That's what we've created in a very short period of time.

Citizen and Customer Experience 

Michael Krigsman: I would like to shift the conversation slightly to the citizen perspective. Customer experience is an area that I'm so focused on. Maybe we should call it "citizen experience." To kick this off, we have a question from Sal Rasa on Twitter. "How do you help make this work visible to citizens? Can people participate and share your optimism?" so the role of citizens in communication.

Miguel Gamiño: Actually, my first response is to broaden it from citizens to people because sometimes it's citizens that you're delivering for; sometimes it's visitors. I think, thinking in general about how we can -- I have this hashtag, so I invite everyone to join that movement, which is, make tech work for people. That's really the crux of it, which is, how do we ensure that the technology or the solutions that are either being developed or need to be developed do so in a way that doesn't lose sight of the real objective, which is improving the quality of life for people who live and visit and operate, if you will, in cities?

Part of that, in some cities, is direct engagement. It's things like community meetings and whatnot. That isn't necessarily Mastercard's role to play but, again, that's the purpose of the ecosystem. There are people in that ecosystem or institutions, I should say, in that ecosystem whose role is to do the actual community engagement.

Not to say we don't want to participate. We're certainly supportive of that and engaged in those sorts of conversations, but just understanding that each party has a role to play. I think what we need to do is make sure that, as we build the technology, as we help create solutions, that the cities have a seat at the table that is also expected to represent the interests of the people that live in those cities so that we don't go and build solutions in a lab somewhere, in a vacuum, and potentially miss the mark on helping address real challenges for real people.

Then the flip side of it, to the question, is also helping the public understand that the value of that engagement is in their own interest. Meaning, if they want to ensure that the future and that urbanization occurs inclusively, then they should engage. They should engage with their city, with their representatives, with industry, and in whatever means available to them to help inform the thinking that goes into the progress that is planned for and executed against in these cities.

Michael Krigsman: Given the complexity of the city environment and the different interests--you know this, obviously, much better than I do but, just within a city, the income diversity, the ethnic diversity, the religious diversity, all of this--what makes you confident that Mastercard and City Possible can make an impact?

Miguel Gamiño: We're an organization with not only our own global scale, as I mentioned 210 countries. The other part is, when we talk about global, we don't talk about just the big cities around the world. As I already mentioned, we are engaging with cities of different kind of profile. That's consistent with Mastercard's current DNA, operating substantially in 210 counties. Our DNA is to be a network of partnerships. That is the way that the core business, if you will, operates.

In so many ways, I'm simply leveraging the strength of the DNA that already exists. Our global presence, our global footprint, our existing relationships with partners around the world, and just kind of doubling down on that in the cities space and saying, "It's not just Mastercard that can accomplish those goals. It's an ecosystem. It's the collection of partners and all the other stakeholder groups that have to be participants.

We've got global reach. We've got resources. We have engagement, partnerships, and relationships all over the world. We're bringing to bear those forces, those assets, and that expertise to help stimulate this trajectory, this progress of inclusive solutions built by the ecosystem collectively.

I think, again, I'm observing. I'm watching the interest, the growth, and the engagement happen at a pace that even optimistic Miguel is somewhat surprised by. Those theories are no longer theories. We're watching them take shape and build traction and momentum in the real world, in real time, at a very impressive pace.

Ecosystem and Partnering to Encourage Diversity

Michael Krigsman: This notion of the ecosystem and the partnering. You didn't use this term, but co-innovation or co-invention, co-creation with the cities, it sounds to me like this is really the bedrock on which you're building everything.

Miguel Gamiño: Absolutely. Absolutely. Listen; the organization, before I joined, accomplished some pretty substantial successes along with these concepts in a way that improved city operations and citizens or the public's experience. Our work in transit is a perfect example of that in London where, by engaging with other industry partners, by engaging with the Transport for London, the city agency itself, and creating something that now we call open loop payments, which basically just means that everyone can use a standard card they have in their pocket already and tap and ride the Tube in London.

That sounds like a relatively modest accomplishment but what it's delivered are pretty dramatic results. Transport for London has claimed themselves over 100 million pounds in annual savings. That's real money that can be reinvested in capacity or other improvements on the system. At the same time, they're enjoying an increase in ridership because the user experience is just better.

Now, we're having conversations with them about, how do we take that success that was pretty focused on a particular issue, how do we leverage the inputs, the recipe, if you will, to have similar outcomes that have the trifecta of victory, impact other parts of the transport business or other parts, even, of the city? I think the reason we get that trifecta is that we've involved those different parties in the co-creation of the solution. We were paying attention to the various priorities and challenges, risks, and opportunities from the various players in the co-creation. You get a better, substantial outcome as a result. We're taking that principle learning of good outcomes come from good approach and now finding other parts of the city ecosystem, other challenges that cities are dealing with, apply the same approach with the goal of accomplishing the same trifecta successes in other parts of the city ecosystem.

What are Smart Cities?

Michael Krigsman: We have another question from Twitter asking if you can weave in, as you've started to do, success stories from member cities. I'm going to ask you to do that in the context of smart cities. We hear that term, smart cities, and what is that? What does that have to do with what you're doing? It seems like there must be some connection, but it's not clear exactly what it is.

Miguel Gamiño: Let's chat a little bit about the term. We'll certainly come back to some specific examples that the audience is interested in, but I think it is first important, as you mentioned, to set the lay of the land.

Smart cities, I would be less uncomfortable with that if it at least was smarter cities, which would indicate a progression. To call it "smart cities" indicates, I think, or insinuates that there is a destination, that there is a moment in which you achieve this smart city designation. You put the stamp on your website and you call it a day and move on to something else.

In fact, I think the reality is that cities have been getting smarter through the application of technology since they were born. For centuries, cities have been getting better. They've been improving quality of life for the people that live there, visit there, or work there. That's what it really is all about.

I think that, in the current frame, we have a particular understanding of what technology means in this era, right? That is things like digitization, data, and those sorts of elements are what we call technology today. Before, it was roads [laughter] and things like that. Those were technological advancements, all of which were making cities smarter. That's, I think, just to reframe it as a journey and less of a perceived destination or accomplishment that people aspire to. I think it is a pathway that is ongoing and continuous.

I believe that City Possible, Mastercard, and our ecosystem of partners will absolutely play an important role in that because we have access to a lot of what I described as modern technology. We have had some specific examples of engaging with, for example, the City of Dublin, who is one of our very first founding members. They came to us in one of our discussions with a problem statement to better understand the impact on the local economy of certain things that either was in their control like policy decisions or things like that and even things that were not in their control like weather patterns and whatnot. Basically, they wanted to better understand what things impacted their economy positively and negatively.

We came to the table with them. Visualize this room. This is a room with the City of Dublin, people from Mastercard and the various parts of our business from the innovation and the labs people to the City's people to data and insights people, and partners, partners who are in the business of building insights dashboards and things like that. You brought all these people to the table.

By the way, this conversation, to some degree, being facilitated in our engagements with our academic partners. All of that to establish the problem statement and the ecosystem that can help address it.

Then a solution was built. It wasn't perfect straight out of the box, but we got to, we'll call it, MVP 1 or version one very, very rapidly. This conversation started in, I want to say, probably November of last year and this first solution was released and publicly announced and presented by the City of Dublin itself in February, I believe. Just in a pretty short period of time, we went from the point of first engagement to a legitimate proof of concept that has done two things. It has already delivered insight to the City of Dublin and also modified the problem statement.

Now, when you know more, then you know that you might know less. As you discover certain insights, then you start a new thread of curiosity for deeper insights that have already evolved.

The City of Dublin, sharing it with the City Possible network, has also inspired other cities who have similar but maybe slightly different need or curiosity for insights to raise their hand and say, "Well, I want to take that in this direction to build on top of the progress already made with one city and then branch it off into a potentially slightly different direction that is of interest to a different city," but always bringing those solutions back to one another so that they share in the progress made by one another.

That's a specific example with an early stage city in Dublin that the second city that I referred to is the city of Helsinki, who is actually the world's first city to join City Possible and has now observed what we did with Dublin. We're leaning in with them now to find slightly different answers to slightly different questions, but it's building on progress already made by one.

When this new kind of version of insights is developed with Helsinki, that very progress is then also available to Dublin in return. This is how they begin to help each other level up and notch up in terms of progress, which might be, frankly, the only way that city governments can accelerate to catch up with consumer expectations and the value proposition of current technology and keep up with that as it continues its exponential trajectory, if you will.

Partnering and Collaboration

Michael Krigsman: Okay. Again, I can see that, in a way, your role is facilitating those partnerships, information sharing, and collaboration opportunities. Would that be accurate?

Miguel Gamiño: Yeah, absolutely. It is facilitation, but it's also engagement. I am not philanthropic. I'm not simply the facilitator. We are creating a safe place where that facilitation happens and where cities can engage with each other without concern for outside interests, if you will. We're doing it in a way so that, when the city does engage with us, as I'd mentioned with Dublin or London and some others, that we're prepared, that we're not now trying to catch up with the discussion and figure out what you've been talking about for the last several months or years. Now we're prepared to engage, but it is giving significant deference to the cities who really own the problems and, frankly, as I mentioned before, represent the people that can stand to benefit or not from how the city uses technology to, as I say, make tech work for people.

Michael Krigsman: Of course, you have a background, having been CIO or CTO for three different cities, so you know the lay of the land. We have some questions from Twitter. We have a couple of different questions from Twitter, so let's jump to them right now. I'll just take them in order.

Number one, @MisterNova, and he says, "Data privacy: should the public sector be held to a higher standard than search engine firms that are allowed to resell consumer data?" What about the data privacy aspect in all of this?

Miguel Gamiño: We have published some principles on the topic. What I will tell you is that I think we hold privacy in high regard as an organization. We think it's paramount.

The city's role, though, I will say and how they feel about it, we are engaging with cities to help them think through how a city approaches privacy and other elements of the data world, but cities have to make many of those decisions. We're engaged as a thought partner. As an organization, we have our own principles that have been published that we can share afterward. In the city space or how it compares to search engines or what have you, I think that's an ongoing, active dialog that, again, is benefited by an ecosystem, by folks who have been thinking about this for a long time, to make sure that we do what we can to protect the privacy and the interests of the people that live in those cities. Absolutely.

Michael Krigsman: Okay. We have a question from Arsalan Khan. It's a good question. He says, "Are there tools, worksheets, anything else available for cities to become smart even though they aren't part of Mastercard's initiative?"

Miguel Gamiño: Joining City Possible is one part of the framework, for sure. We want to encourage cities to join so that they are actively engaged in the dialog. But we also have done lots of work with cities, again previous to this structure, this approach, and on an ongoing basis.

We do have things in different parts of the organization that helps cities accomplish their goals. We have lab environments, data environments, and toolkits that we can make available to cities. We have solutions that have been built around, as I mentioned, open loop payments and transit with partners that are available to cities, data insights platforms, things like that. All of those things are available to cities regardless of whether they've officially joined, you know, become part of the City Possible network piece, but we certainly want to try to engage with cities as holistically as possible, leveraging those tools, toolkits, and frameworks, and also bringing them into this network that helps them engage with one another.

Helping Cities in the Global South

Michael Krigsman: Okay. Great. We have another question from Twitter, a really interesting one. Angela Khakali says, "Do smart cities present a meaningful way to make growth in cities of the Global South sustainable, equitable, and inclusive? What are the opportunities and barriers? Can you speak to City Possible experience in this area?"

Miguel Gamiño: What's being referred to as a Global South are the emerging markets. Again, we're engaged with, in Brazil, Curitiba and Guarulhos. Brazil is obviously a large market with lots of development. Buenos Aires is another one. Inside of those cities, there are certainly pockets of emerging community and opportunity.

I'm coming up on a decade in this industry. I've witnessed a pivot to being focused on inclusive outcomes for the people that live there. We've been engaging with those communities; Buenos Aires is a developed city but has a community inside of that city, that needs to catch up with what's happened. The government, in our engagement with them, have particular focus on that and we have the ability to bring the ecosystem, solutions, and attention to those parts of cities in the Global South, just as a kind of representative term, to help those as they do develop that they, number one, benefit from the lessons learned ahead of them; take advantage of the current state of the art, so don't modernize to yesterday, but modernize to tomorrow; and do that in a way that can also, truthfully, provide a guiding light to some developed markets, some cities that can learn from new advancements that take place in that Global South to address pockets of lack of inclusion, if you will, inside of their own cities.

There is as much to be shared with the Global South is there is to be learned from it. I really truly believe that this global environment is absolutely a bidirectional victory. This is not about New York, Paris, Dubai of the world just teaching things to everybody else. There is as much to be learned in those cities from that Global South as there is to be shared with it. We've watched that happen in real time in many of the cities I've just mentioned.

Michael Krigsman: We're almost out of time, so let me ask you something if you can answer very quickly. Why do cities need a CIO or a CTO? I'll ask you just to answer that, please, really fast because there's another topic I just have to talk with you about.

Miguel Gamiño: Yeah. I think someone needs to be paying attention to the role technology plays in the city's future. You could call it whatever you want. The job title is less important than the role and the responsibly. That is because I think urbanization, technological transformation, a.k.a. disruption, is happening whether you are engaged with it or not. And so, I think, to have somebody who is paying attention to that is a really important ingredient to making sure that, as it happens in your community, it happens in the most positive manner, an inclusive manner, and engaging with other cities, with industry partners and selfishly, City Possible I think helps also substantiate that visibility and that approach to the use of technology in cities.

Advice for City Leaders

Michael Krigsman: Okay. Very good. We have just a short time left. I think it's important to talk about advice. Let's maybe begin. I know there are a few different dimensions here that we can discuss, but let's begin with how can smaller cities get involved? I think, for larger cities that get the attention, it's just so much easier in some respects. They have the resources.

Miguel Gamiño: Great question. This also kind of pulls on my previous experiences. When I was in El Paso, the story that I tell is, when I was in El Paso -- El Paso, by the way, is a big city. It's nearly the size, population-wise, of San Francisco. The metro area, including the Mexican side, is four million people, so it's no small community by any stretch, but it doesn't have the visibility that San Francisco or New York had.

I learned and developed along the way, but I had many of the same crazy ideas when I was in El Paso that became interesting when I was in San Francisco and became impossible to ignore when I was in New York just because of the scale that I represented changed. The industry's recognition of those crazy ideas and engagements changed also. Beyond just the power of collaboration, the diversity of collaboration was a lesson I learned through that process.

There are people in cities like El Paso, there are also people in cities that are even less well known in the Global South, as we previously referred, that have great ideas and are even doing great things. Small cities and big cities, it's an open invitation to join City Possible and let that help elevate your visibility to the industry partners and to each other.

I think that that one of the strengths that we offer is to provide that platform, and so every city in the world is invited to raise their hand to join us. CityPossible.com is one way of engaging with us. As you know, Mike, I'm on Twitter, LinkedIn, email. Just about every method, I'm readily available, as is my team. We are highly engaged and want to invite cities to use our platform to gain access to each other, to gain access to the industry, to increase visibility to the great ideas that exist everywhere in the world.

Michael Krigsman: Okay. In the spirit of moving along quickly because we're running out of time, we have a question from Twitter. It's actually the same question that I was going to ask for advice, so I'll just ask it from Twitter. I guess great minds think alike.

This is from Smart Cities Library who is asking, "How can City Possible and, in general, how can cities learn to incorporate knowledge and perspective of diverse and underserved communities including people with disabilities?"

Miguel Gamiño: Yeah. Great question. When we talk about inclusion, we mean it in that broad sense. This is about financial inclusion. It's about digital inclusion. It's about accessibility across the table.

I think that there are cities out there that have had the resources, capacity, whatever the reason, to really lead the way with accessibility and they are showing how important it is to really truly accomplish inclusive outcomes. I think that's important is to continue to highlight that. We do want to make sure that that focus is incorporated into the discussions that we're having and the solutions we're co-creating and scaling with cities.

I think it's also an opportunity for me; two questions I'd like to address in this thread: one is small city versus big city; and the other is, what city is the smartest, or what city has made the most progress? First of all, if you're a small city, find a big one. If you're a big city, find a small one.

The small cities tend to have strengths that big ones don't and vice versa. Small cities can move quickly. They have agility. They have different kinds of strengths. Big cities have often resources, scale, and attention from the industry. City Possible intends to bring all that together to take advantage of sharing those strengths across the board.

The other is about which cities made the most progress. Well, it depends on what they've been focused on. Different cities have made more progress in the area of transit mobility while other cities have made more progress in the area of accessibility, as was the question. Others have made more progress in the area of job creation and financial inclusion.

It depends on where they focus their resources.

Just like I told you the story about Dublin and Helsinki, this is the same. It is most important not to identify the smartest city. It is more important that we identify progress made in cities and share it between them so that they level each other up on all of those different kinds of areas of interest and priority. That is, I think, a pretty specific intent, objective, and opportunity that exists through this collaboration that we are very proud to facilitate and scale globally with City Possible.

Michael Krigsman: Miguel Gamiño, thank you so much for being with us today.

Miguel Gamiño: Thank you so much for having me. It's been great to have the conversation. Thank you for weaving in the Twitter questions. I look forward to having this dialog often and soon.

Michael Krigsman: Everybody, you have been watching Miguel Gamiño. He's the executive vice president for Global Cities at Mastercard. You can check them out using @CityPossible on Twitter. Miguel, as he said, is on Twitter.

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Thank you so much, everybody. Have a great week. We will see you again soon. Bye-bye.