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Making European Cities smarter: take the survey! (updated)
Update (20/1/2012): the survey is now closed - many thanks to all who took it
The European Commission is launching a new platform in early 2012 to encourage the development of smart cities projects and policies. Its first step is a user survey to ensure the platform meets stakeholder needs.
By combining technologies as diverse as water recycling, advanced energy grids and mobile communications, smart cities reduce their environmental impact and offer their citizens better lives.
This is not, however, simply a technical challenge. Organisational change in governments - and indeed society at large – is just as essential.
Making a city smart is therefore a very multidisciplinary challenge, bringing together city officials, innovative suppliers, national and EU policymakers, academics and civil society.
The Smart Cities Stakeholder Platform will stimulate the emergence of smart cities by bringing these stakeholders together from across Europe to exchange ideas, launch projects and improve policy.
The two main goals are:
- Policy input and analysis: get stakeholder input into how national and EU policies and programmes can best support smart cities;
- Smart City Projects: help cities go smart through both helping cities learn from each other and by generating privately and publicly funded projects.
Working Groups and online communities
At the heart of the Platform will be a set of Working Groups focused on detailed policy issues (energy, transport, water and waste management, finance, etc.); a community-oriented website; and a series of physical conferences and workshops, all tightly integrated together.
One of the guiding principles of the Platform will be openness. Anyone will be able to join the Platform and submit relevant content - perhaps a best practice from their city; a project idea for a networking session; or an innovative technical solution.
Another principle, however, will be quality. The authors of the best submissions, for example, could be invited to input their ideas into a Working Group’s recommendation for EU policy, or to present them at the next conference.
Your views needed!
But is this a good idea? How should the platform best balance openness and quality? And how should the site manage these conversations (forums, blogs, Calls for Papers)? What else should the website provide, within the resources available?
We need your insight, so please take a few minutes to tell us what you need from the Smart Cities Stakeholder Platform:
The survey gives you plenty of scope to add ideas. You are also welcome to comments to this and other posts on this site's blog.
Stay informed, spread the word
Want to be informed when the Smart Cities Stakeholder Platform opens?
You will be able to subscribe to our e-newsletter within the survey, but if you do not have time right now you can already subscribe to the e-newsletter from this site (top right of any page). Don’t forget to come back for the survey later!
Finally, the more survey results we receive, the better the Smart Cities Stakeholder Platform will be, so please spread the word about this survey.
While we will only develop the Platform’s social media strategy after the survey results are in, we have launched this blog and a Twitter account in the interim, and are putting together a Twitter list of people active in smart cities.
So if you are a Twitter user, please: