Canadian Smart Cities: Are we wiring new citizen-local government interactions?

Authors: Peter Johnson*, University of Waterloo, Pamela Robinson, Ryerson University
Topics: Geographic Information Science and Systems, Planning Geography
Keywords: Smart city, participation, citizen, open government, digital geography
Session Type: Paper
Day: 4/6/2019
Start / End Time: 9:55 AM / 11:35 AM
Room: 8222, Park Tower Suites, Marriott, Lobby Level
Presentation File: No File Uploaded


Over the last decade plus, governments around the world have moved towards being more open, accountable, and responsive to their citizenry. Many of the examples of this movement have shown early promise, as well as related challenges. For example, open data and civic hackathons represented an evolution of interactions between citizen and government, yet also fall prey to some of the traditional, durable challenges of governance, including citizen engagement, equity, and transparency of procurement processes. The current trend towards government investment in smart cities shows potential to repeat many of the same trajectories of early boosterism, followed by the reality of status-quo behaviour. Drawing from the 20 municipal government finalists in the Canadian Smart City Challenge, this presentation aims to broadly ask if we are seeing similarities or differences in how the smart city changes the nature of citizen/government interactions? How are these connections strengthened, challenged, and redirected through technological interventions?

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