IESE-PPP Cities-R okThe Specialist Centre on PPPs in Smart and Sustainable Cities (PPP for Cities) is a research, innovation and advisory center that aims to provide public administrations throughout the world with support in the organization, management and development of projects involving collaboration between the public and private sectors in the smart cities arena.

PPP for Cities task is to help cities around the world transform themselves into Smart and Sustainable Cities (SSC) by embracing the Sustainable Development Goals (SDG) of the United Nations (UN). PPP for Cities will focus its efforts in particular to address goal number 11, “Make cities and human settlements inclusive, safe, resilient and sustainable” using Public-Private Partnerships as one of the most successful mechanism.

It is also a partnership platform between companies and administrations from all over the world where they can further explore the dynamics of public-private partnerships, create guides to good practices and standards and design solutions to the issues facing cities.

The center is led by IESE Business School and is part of the United Nations’ International Centre of Excellence on PPPs program. It has the support and sponsorship of Barcelona City Hall and other public administrations and private companies.

The headquarters of the PPP for Cities are located in Public-Private Sector Research Center at IESE (PPSRC-IESE) in collaboration with the Cities in Motion program.


To become an international benchmark in the provision of advisory services to public administrations regarding how to improve and plan their cities throught the public-private collaboration. These services shall be based on the creation of an archive of practical case studies, the development of management standards, the publication of handbooks on good practices, training and ongoing research and innovation.


According to the United Nations, some of the main objectives of the PPP for Cities are:

  • Identifying and disseminating good practices internationally
  • Creating working standards for designing, bidding, contracting, managing and evaluating PPP for cities projects
  • Helping governments develop public-private partnership projects in the sphere of cities
  • Creating spaces of debate among companies, administrations and experts from all over the world on specific topics
  • Conducting research
  • Designing training strategies in the sector for state, regional and local governments, especially in countries with less experience, and fostering the exchange of knowledge with countries with more experience in PPPs
  • Providing specialized training in PPPs