At Smart City Expo in Barcelona, Mastercard and Dublin City Council (DCC) today announced a three-year innovation partnership to support Dublin’s city planning and future development efforts as part of its Smart Dublin programme.

Mastercard will develop its SpendingPulse reports to be released as part of DCC’s Quarterly Economic Monitor. The reports will include insights on retail spending and tourism patterns drawn from anonymised and aggregated transaction data as well as other means of payments such as cash and cheques. This will help the city develop new insights on the spending patterns of Dubliners and tourists, as well as comparing the capital’s performance to the whole of Ireland. Over the course of the three-year agreement there is also a commitment to drive innovation opportunities in transit, planning and tourism and to engage with Dublin’s thriving startup ecosystem.

“Dublin is leading the way in harnessing the power of big data to help run the city more efficiently, advance tourism and to better understand the economic trends and behaviour of its residents and visitors”, said Jason Lalor, Country Manager, Mastercard Ireland. “Mastercard is delighted to bring our expertise and innovation capacity to help the city use our data to plan better economic policies and interventions that will improve its overall economic performance.”

Owen Keegan, Chief Executive, Dublin City Council commented: “This unique partnership with Mastercard will allow Dublin develop up-to-date insights on its economic performance at a time when we face a number of external threats such as Brexit. This is a great example of private sector data being used for smarter purposes and supporting future city planning. We look forward to also exploring new cashless innovations in Dublin while also engaging with the local startup ecosystem in this process.”

Mastercard Labs is driving innovation globally from its offices in Dublin through its global research and development group. Here, technologists and payment experts design and test new ways to pay, and have created technologies that are now being used around the world, such as Qkr. As part of the partnership with Dublin City Council, Mastercard will work to engage with Dublin startups to come up with new innovations to promote a cashless society while also developing new innovations in using the city’s data.