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Community Readiness

Symposium 2018

205C: Whose Smart City?: Planning Open and Inclusive Smart Cities

October 11, 2018

12:45pm - 1:00pm

Student Ignite

We hear that big data and smart city tech have the potential to bring real improvements to the
lives of urban dwellers—improving safety, mobility and service delivery, and allowing better
coordination among city functions. But do these proposed benefits outweigh the concerns that
come with them?

As urban planners, we need to fully consider what technology means for our practice. The
combination of big data and smart city technology—sometimes called urban informatics—has
major implications for planners. This session will highlight reasons why planners ought to be concerned and what we can do to engage with the challenges and opportunities of smart cities.

Learning Objectives:

  • The huge amounts of raw, unfiltered data generated in the smart city are useless to most users
  • Decision-making and service delivery will increasingly be driven by big data and algorithms, yet we can’t easily examine them and question how they work
  • Tracking behaviour in public spaces, collecting and storing this data raises serious ethical questions around privacy and consent