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Remember citizens in smart city development

Smart Infrastructure and Construction

It is an exciting time to work in smart city development but the end user must not be forgotten, according to an IT and telecom specialist.

While highlighting the positives in the smart city movement – citing the decline of hype around smart cities and the rise of innovation – head of enterprise advisory at Current Analysis Gary Barnett stressed that technology for technology’s sake must be avoided.

Speaking at the Westminster eForum keynote seminar on UK Smart Cities, he reminded those working in the sector that they should focus on improving the lives of citizens with smart infrastructure rather than on the smart infrastructure alone.

He also highlighted the importance of the private sector in smart city innovation.

“When public sector organisations try to innovate, it looks a little like dad dancing,” he said.

Barnett mentioned the significance of open data in the smart city movement, saying: “A fundamental part of making a city smart is making it aware.”

He added that although the government’s attitude towards open data is positive, it needs to be more “accessible for those who have not gone to Hogwarts.”

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