Cities must be prepared to respond to catastrophic storms, fires, mass shootings, pandemics, riots and other assorted crises. Some crises are worse than others. Natural and man-made disasters are known to disrupt local government services, destroy private property and damage critical infrastructure — isolating the population and placing lives at risk.
Smart City Solutions Articles
7 MIN. READ
9 MIN. READ
Ensuring pedestrian safety is a complex challenge throughout the world - especially when many smart cities are encouraging more walking while trying to reduce hazardous crosswalk and traffic situations. In this article, we cover pedestrian safety challenges, offer examples of smart crosswalk solutions and review pedestrian safety policies.
10 MIN. READ
More than 35 years ago, an American entrepreneur challenged the monopoly power and anti-competitive practices of AT&T - at that time the nation’s dominant provider of telephony services. Today, government leaders and entrepreneurs are challenging the dominance of cable companies who control broadband networks and operate as internet service providers (ISPs). Today’s challenge is driven by the digital divide and a digital equity shortfall in the U.S. which places many low-income households, students, small businesses, unemployed and rural citizens at a disadvantage.
12 MIN. READ
Mobile operators worldwide are investing in 5G networks, and proponents of this much-hyped technology believe it will enable a new wave of smart city development. According to the IEEE, "5G is not just an evolutionary upgrade of the previous generation of cellular networks. It is a revolutionary technology … and a critical piece of the smart city puzzle."
16 MIN. READ
In less than a decade, the concept known as mobility as a service (MaaS) has captured the imagination of visionaries and innovators throughout the global transport industry. As an opportunity with potential to transform the industry and reduce dependence on car ownership, MaaS evolved from an intriguing concept to early-stage reality (at least in terms of trials, pilot projects and embryonic services).
14 MIN. READ
In their eagerness to create breakthrough technologies and disruptive platforms, innovators sometimes collide with an established (and perhaps ill-suited) regulatory and policy-making process. In a previous article on e-scooters, we reported that a strategy of "permissionless innovation" enabled app-activated e-scooter startups to gain a precarious foothold in urban mobility markets. However, these startups soon discovered that safety and regulatory issues - including the lack of regulations in most situations - led to controversial relations with cities and citizens. In this article, we cover recent experiences, lessons learned and thoughts on the need for collaborative solutions. For an overview of the e-scooter market and its dynamics, read our article E-Scooters: A Passing Fad or Smart Mobility?
15 MIN. READ
Electric scooters appeal to those who want to move quickly and easily through urban streets at low cost while avoiding congestion and solving first mile / last mile mobility problems. However, menacing clouds - in the form of safety, regulatory and business model issues - linger above the nascent e-scooter sharing market, raising questions about its future. A key question is whether cities can find ways for this new micro-mobility service to add value to sustainable urban mobility. In this article, we explore the e-scooter market and competitive dynamics and offer a perspective on smart city challenges. To learn about the lessons learned from the city perspective regarding the introduction of e-scooter sharing, please read our article E-Scooters: A Collision Between Innovation And Controversy.
9 MIN. READ
When it comes to public safety, smart city leaders recognize the importance of engaging with citizens and encouraging them to report safety problems. In this article, we present a perspective on public safety — and focus on Vizsafe, a U.S. startup firm which discovered opportunities to incentivize citizens and improve safety by creating a platform which connects the power of crowdsourcing and smartphone technologies with a blockchain-based rewards system.
7 MIN. READ
Smart education is a key ingredient in smart city development. Strengths in basic education, advanced training and certification, universities and community colleges, e-learning infrastructure, lifelong learning and innovation in education technologies are all part of what defines a smart city. "For the citizens of a smart city to thrive, we must first place education at its center," according to Dr. I-Chang Tsai, Vice President and Director General of Digital Education, Institute for Information Industry in Taiwan. Smart cities recognize the need for "education programs producing graduates with modern knowledge, practical skills and collaborative attitudes."
10 MIN. READ
Urban innovators with smart city aspirations rely on university knowledge and resources when addressing complex issues. Through access to research and thought leadership on urban challenges, smart cities benefit from partnerships with universities.
The Changing Face of Urban Innovation
When contemplating the need for urban improvement, cities once looked for efficiency gains, cost savings, and incremental, low-risk innovation to enhance local government operations. Today, urban residents demand much more from city leaders. Wicked urban problems such as homelessness, lack of affordable housing, pollution, congestion, inequality, social and digital exclusion, and environmental threats require bold thinking and a new paradigm in public sector innovation - made possible through collaboration with universities.