White paper explores the ‘Smart City’ phenomenon

A ‘must read’ for MK:Smart followers is a white paper published this week which asks: what makes a city ‘smart’ and what are the challenges that must be overcome to realise the economic potential?

MK at night

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The Centre for Cities is a charity which conducts research into how and why economic growth and change takes place in Britain’s cities, and helps cities improve their performance.

Their white paper this week put the spotlight on the ‘smart city agenda’. It suggests there is confusion over smart city definitions and describes some of the activities that cities are involved in. It sets out the barriers to developing the smart technologies market and describes the UK Government’s approach towards supporting its development. The briefing concludes that:

“Cities should find their own definition of what ‘smart’ means, mainly by:

• Integrating smarter technologies with their economic development and public services plans and considering how technology or use of data might help them achieve existing objectives more effectively
• Focusing on pragmatic approaches
• Adopting a participatory approach to setting and delivering strategies and initiatives.

Cities can also start joining up efforts across departments, releasing more of their data, learning from international case studies on what works and what doesn’t, joining new networks, and collaborating with the private sector and other partners to test products and identify new business models to take projects forward.”

Milton Keynes was one of the featured case studies in this paper which is a ‘must read’ for MK:Smart followers.

Read the report here.