Cities are getting smarter. All around the world, governments are investing in the pilots of smart operating systems that leverage the Internet of Things (IoT) and advanced analytics to improve the operational capacity of roadways, parking, and transit, the efficiencies of energy in buildings, public safety, and the overall quality of life for citizens. Sometimes we forget that last part. Smart city initiatives leverage IoT to improve quality of life.
I joined the grant proposal team in Columbus, Ohio that brought together expert ideas to win the $50 million grand prize from the DoT Smart Cities Challenge. While the grant called for a deep understanding of technology and major strategic matching and contributions from the city - which in itself was a mountain to climb - it also required an intelligent understanding of how technology can directly improve and catalyze cultural growth in a city.
Key Success Factors in A Smart City IoT Platform Pilot
Prior to developing a pilot for a Smart Cities operating system, a city must consider the community stakeholders and the tangible outcomes that the technology can provide them. Otherwise, why build the tech in the first place? By beginning with tangible outcomes that unite stakeholders around compelling reasons for change, communities can better forecast the benefits and fund the design and implementation of city-wide smart technologies.
Management processes that are aligned to deliverables and incremental agile software development are key to a successful pilot. However, valuable data is the main reason why cities adopt IoT solutions. Having the right, stakeholder-aligned vision for how data can enable tangible ROI is foundational for Smart Cities initiatives that make impact.
Kalypso at SXSW
This year at SXSW, Kalypso is leading a global community of Smart Cities experts in discussion about how data from a city’s smart connected operating system can drive tangible ROI into the cultural dimension of cities.
Including and beyond the many known use cases of smart initiatives, could it be possible to have a citywide data framework that can be leveraged by startups and companies for continuous, future development? Could a centralized system of data be open to the private sector to drive sustainable, cost-effective improvement efforts as future needs arise? From apps that offer data-driven parking solutions for events, festivals, and conferences to art district promotions that leverage data streams from remote security monitoring to drive stronger tourism and public engagement initiatives in downtown arts, with smart cities operating systems emerging, both cultural leaders and private business CTO’s are being welcomed to collaborate on developments that improve city life.
If your team is casting vision for smart operating systems, join us at SXSW or get in touch below.