Open-source innovation is at the forefront of ensuring that software-based processes, operational models, decision-making, and end-user experiences happen in a sustainable and cost-effective manner, but how is it being used in Smart City applications? The topic has been explored in detail in the latest White Paper from the FIWARE Foundation and a selection of its members and partners.
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When it comes to air quality, cities that attract heavy industry are often some of the biggest victims. For the municipality of El Prat de Llobregat, just outside of Barcelona, air pollution is a huge problem. The area is an attractive place for industry, largely because of the region’s location: it’s sandwiched directly between the bustling Barcelona Airport on one side and the restless Port of Barcelona on the other. While industry often brings wealth to a region, it also brings its fair share of challenges.
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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.
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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."
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The current climate crisis is having a drastic effect on the planet. While it’s easy to place the blame on rapid deforestation and unsustainable industry, one of the largest contributors to the current climate change phenomenon is much closer to home: our cities.
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The first edition of CityTech RUHR, Germany’s largest international smart city startup challenge, concluded with the successful development and implementation of pilot projects by three international startups in three participating cities of the Ruhr Metropolis. Three success stories reflect the high innovation potential that can be leveraged through the collaboration between cities and startups.
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The Covid-19 pandemic has posed similar challenges to cities and municipalities around the world. What have we learned from the Covid-19 pandemic and how can innovative solutions also be used in the post-crisis period? The international digital ideas competition #SolutionsForCities, started by the German Federal Ministry of the Interior, Building and Community (BMI), is not only intended to find answers to all these questions. Rather, cities and municipalities are to be supported through international collaboration in identifying digital solutions to overcome their local challenges.
Partnering cities of the International Smart Cities Network (ISCN) and German cities that have been recognized as "Smart Cities Model Projects" have identified current challenges to be solved through the international ideas competition.
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The Covid-19 pandemic has made a tremendous impact on people’s everyday lives. Changes to our regular routines have been coming in thick and fast, from mask-wearing protocol to social distancing etiquette. Of all these changes, how we move around and get from A to B has seen some of the most drastic changes.
Over the past few months, mobility has rapidly evolved into an entirely new beast. Faithful and reliable transport methods are being shunned in favour of new systems. Citizens are avoiding crowded trains and buses in favour of bicycles and e-scooters. As cities evolve to phase out car usage, improving air quality and the health of citizens, the Covid-19 pandemic has provided a unique opportunity to overhaul urban mobility. But will these changes be here for good?
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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?