News

Scroll down to read the latest news and trends in the smart cities space. Also check out timely articles about Compassionate Cities.

What smart cities were buying and planning in September 2019

Mon, 2019-09-30 09:57 -- Jesse Berst
09/29/2019

As the smart cities movement continues to expand, municipal governments can learn from their peers about what they are buying, why they are buying, and how they are buying to support their initiatives. And companies in the business-to-government (B2G) marketplace can learn about trends and opportunities. Here are 10 smart city projects that were recently awarded, put out to bid, or added to an agency’s future spending plans.

A free work/play trip to Dublin: Enterprise Ireland to host North American smart cities for knowledge exchange

Mon, 2019-09-30 09:46 -- Jesse Berst
09/29/2019

Enterprise Ireland (EI) and the Smart Cities Council are partnering to bring North American smart cities to Dublin in December 2019 to exchange with Irish cities and technology companies. To find the best North American projects, the Council is holding a competition from October 1 to November 1, 2019. North American cities are invited to nominate projects inside the Council’s Smart Cities Activator online planning platform, which already hosts several hundred North American projects.

Looking to accelerate your community’s resilience? Join the Smart Cities Council Global Resiliency Network

Mon, 2019-09-30 09:28 -- Jesse Berst
09/30/2019

All over the world, resiliency is moving to the top of the urban agenda. In response, the Smart Cities Council is partnering with leading organizations and governments to form a global network to accelerate community resilience. Individuals, agencies and organizations who would like access to tools and best practices can register their interest at https://resiliencynetwork.global.

Instructions to Participate in Irish Smart City Knowledge Exchange

Wed, 2019-09-18 10:53 -- Jon DeKeles
09/18/2019

If you are a city in North America, you are invited to provide information about your smart city projects in the Council’s Smart Cities Activator. You may have gotten an email inviting your city to participate. If so, follow the instructions in the email. Or click to find out how to participate.

Irish Knowledge Exchange

Wed, 2019-09-18 03:57 -- Philip Bane
09/18/2019

Enterprise Ireland Partners with the Smart Cities Council to Accelerate Irish Progress. The Council is inviting North American cities to nominate projects from which Enterprise Ireland will select cities with bold projects that improve their livability, workability, and sustainability To participate please visit for a further description of the Readiness Invitation and how your city can participate.

Inside Look: What cities were buying and planning in August 2019

Thu, 2019-08-22 05:59 -- Philip Bane
08/22/2019

Companies looking to supply smart cities with products or services have plenty of opportunities available across the country. As more government agencies begin investing in the smart cities movement, companies in the business-to-government (B2G) marketplace have the chance to take advantage.

WeGO Chooses Smart Cities Activator

Sun, 2019-08-11 09:25 -- Philip Bane
08/11/2019

World Smart Sustainable Cities Organization (WeGO) and Smart Cities Council (Council) have partnered to improve their mutual engagement with cities globally. The partnership, while using Smart Cities Activator as the foundation, is also based on working together to advance smart city projects by sharing with cities best practices for project development, feasibility, and project financing.

Why your city should imitate Baltimore. (Yes, we said Baltimore.)

Tue, 2019-07-30 13:55 -- Philip Bane
07/29/2019

If you’ve read the recent criticisms of Baltimore by Donald Trump, you might be tempted to write the city off. In reality, Baltimore is on the brink of becoming a smart, sustainable city. This article explains, and suggests the lessons other cities can learn from it.

Inside Look: What U.S. smart cities were buying and planning in July 2019

Mon, 2019-07-29 14:30 -- SCC Staff
07/29/2019

As more governments begin investing in the smart cities movement, companies in the business-to-government (B2G) marketplace have the chance to take advantage. This article explains 10 smart city projects that were recently a) awarded to a vendor, or b) recently put out to bid, or c) included in an agency’s future spending plan.

Why and how to treat cyber attacks like natural disasters

Mon, 2019-07-29 14:12 -- Philip Bane
07/29/2019

The National Governors Association believes every state needs a cyber response plan like the ones used for natural disasters. It has prepared an issue brief with 14 recommendations plus links to helpful information. Why bother? Put simply, a significant cyber incident could stretch a central government's ability to respond. States need plans in place to ensure they are ready to respond without federal help.

Resiliency best practices emerge from Texas workshops

Mon, 2019-07-29 11:49 -- SCC Staff
07/29/2019

Qualcomm sponsored a series of workshops in Texas, where we developed 18 specific project ideas other regions can study for ideas. In addition, the process revealed six best practices: 1) Build a national/regional coalition; 2) Build side-by-side with the communities; 3) Build back better; 4) Build smart from the start; 5) Take a phased approach; and 6) Move from conversation mode to action mode. This article provides a link to the resulting action plan where you can review details.

Virginia Chooses Smart Cities Activator

Thu, 2019-07-18 11:26 -- Philip Bane
07/18/2019

The Chief Data Officer, (CDO), for the Commonwealth of Virginia, Carlos Rivero announced a state-wide survey of cities and counties in Virginia to support development of a statewide data governance policy. Recognizing the critical role of data governance for smart communities, the CDO has partnered with the Center for Innovative Technology and is using Smart Cities Activator, an online collaborative platform provided by the Smart Cities Council.

Developing a Smart Province in Indonesia – An Opportunity to Collaborate

Thu, 2019-06-27 08:27 -- SCC Staff
06/27/2019

Based on research jointly conducted by AlphaBeta, the Hinrich Foundation and the Centre for Strategic and International Studies (CSIS) titled “The Digital Komodo Dragon: How Indonesia can capture digital trade opportunity at home and abroad”, the Jakarta Post recently reported that digital trade is expected to be the biggest support for the country’s economy by 2030.

Cities and electric companies can unlock a powerful partnership (here's how)

Thu, 2019-05-16 15:05 -- Kevin Ebi
05/16/2019

If you want to become a smart, sustainable city — and if you want the prosperity that comes along — you must have the support of your electric company. A new guide from the Smart Cities Council and Edison Electric Institute outlines a proven path to success.

How real-time monitoring is saving Charlotte County, FL, money and water

Thu, 2019-04-25 18:57 -- SCC Partner
04/24/2019

Advanced Metering Infrastructure is paying substantial dividends in one Florida county, which dramatically accelerated its water meter rollout after a successful pilot. Learn how the system is helping Charlotte County better serve transient residents and more quickly pinpoint water losses.

Most cities are growing (but people are still being left behind)

Thu, 2019-04-04 21:41 -- Kevin Ebi
04/04/2019

Nearly every major metropolitan area in the U.S. is delivering economic growth and prosperity. But within those areas, those gains aren’t usually shared. A new Brookings Metropolitan Policy Program report shows where the growth is happening and which communities need to work to be more inclusive.

Discover the smart airport that’s teaching lessons to smart cities (and see it in action)

Thu, 2019-02-28 19:25 -- Jesse Berst
02/28/2019

Need some inspiration for your smart cities initiatives? Consider stealing ideas from the San Diego airport, which has made great strides in sustainability and smart parking. Learn how — and how to see it in action through a special site tour at Smart Cities Week San Diego.

The 2019 Smart Cities Council Readiness Challenge

Fri, 2019-01-11 08:03 -- SCC Staff
08/03/2018

Accelerate your smart cities progress by participating in the 2019 Smart Cities Council Readiness Challenge, open to government jurisdictions of all levels in the U.S., Canada and Mexico. Receive valuable help to envision, collaborate, plan and finance your smart cities efforts. Learn how you can be the next winning city.

4 reasons cities need to be more resilient (and 4 ways tech can help)

Thu, 2018-12-20 12:41 -- Kevin Ebi
12/20/2018

Last year was the most destructive on record for natural disasters in the U.S. How prepared is your city? A new paper produced by the Smart Cities Council and the Consumer Technology Association highlights some ways smart approaches are helping cities to respond and prevent damage. Read on for highlights.

Taking the guesswork out of Mexico's energy demand forecasts

Thu, 2018-12-13 13:39 -- Doug Peeples
12/13/2018

When the hot seasons begin, Mexico's national electric system operator has struggled to meet the demand for power when millions of air conditioners are turned on and used more often. Read our story to learn about the steps the utility's taking to be better prepared when that happens.

Readiness Challenge Update: How Puerto Rico plans to build back stronger

Thu, 2018-12-13 11:48 -- Kevin Ebi
12/13/2018

Puerto Rico, which is still recovering from the damage brought by Hurricane Maria a year ago, has big ambitions: it wants to be a resilience showcase for the world. See how our 2018 Smart Cities Readiness Challenge humanitarian grant winner used its Readiness Workshop to build a better future.

Why Calgary's betting on low-power technology to realize its smart city vision

Thu, 2018-12-06 18:53 -- Doug Peeples
12/05/2018

The city of Calgary is taking on a variety of smart city initiatives to build a stronger economy and enhance the quality of life of its citizens. And so far it's the only city in Canada to build its own low-power wide area network to support them.

UN: Much more needs to be done to combat hunger

Thu, 2018-11-08 16:51 -- Doug Peeples
11/07/2018

Malnutrition and hunger rates remain high in several parts of the world, and are exacerbated by inequality in many. A series of UN reports outline the crisis and insist that governments at all levels urgently need to address the issue with better policies and infrastructures and a stronger commitment to ending hunger.

How New York is preparing for growth by motivating people to save water

Thu, 2018-11-08 13:43 -- Kevin Ebi
11/07/2018

While many of the world’s largest cities are already struggling with water shortages, a conservation program from SUEZ is helping parts of New York stretch water to supply 15,000 new residents without impact. Learn how incentives and partnerships with other utilities make the program work.

Update: New projects (and partners) for Spokane's WA's smart city living lab

Thu, 2018-11-01 16:50 -- Doug Peeples
10/31/2018

Spokane, Washington's smart city living lab Urbanova already has noteworthy milestones under its belt. Now, with new partners and resources it's intensifying its efforts to create a smarter, safer city — and a template other cities can use to do the same.

Detroit's got a different take on electric scooters. Here's why

Thu, 2018-11-01 16:40 -- Doug Peeples
11/01/2018

When electric scooters started appearing on urban streets and sidewalks, some cities banned them or restricted their numbers until they could regulate them. Detroit, however, is taking an entirely different approach — and the city wants more scooters, not fewer. Click for details.

How one city is resolving its smart cities funding dilemma

Wed, 2018-10-31 16:40 -- SCC Partner
10/31/2018

Funding is often a major stumbling block that gets in the way of implementing smart cities projects. But it doesn't always have to be. Read our story to learn how Bethlehem, Pennsylvania is dramatically cutting its energy costs, and can devote the money it's saving to smart cities initiatives.

Readiness Challenge Update: How Virginia is working to be a smart state for all

Thu, 2018-10-25 15:50 -- Kevin Ebi
10/24/2018

Virginia, one of our 2018 Readiness Challenge winners, hosted its Readiness Workshop this week, focusing on delivering benefits to all residents. Check out some of the ideas — and see why you may want to encourage your state to become a smart state.

New federal guidelines are in the works for autonomous vehicles: what you should know

Thu, 2018-10-18 17:25 -- Doug Peeples
10/18/2018

Precisely when autonomous vehicles will be commonplace on city streets is still up in the air. However, federal transportation agencies are working on new guidelines to ensure the transition to an automated transportation future is as safe and efficient as possible when it does arrive.

An Oregon electric utility is building three smart grids – and it wants customers to help out

Thu, 2018-10-18 17:15 -- Doug Peeples
10/18/2018

It's an ambitious project: building three smart grids in three cities as a smart grid test bed. But that's how an Oregon electric utility plans to make good on its promise of a clean energy future. And it wants customers to sign on as project partners.

Why local universities can be one of your best smart city partners

Thu, 2018-10-11 18:15 -- Doug Peeples
10/10/2018

Adopting and adapting smart city technologies successfully is a challenge for many cities. And for cities like Portland, Oregon, homelessness is a serious challenge too. A local Portland city university is establishing two new research centers to find solutions for both of those challenges.

Are open data programs really a good fit for cities?

Thu, 2018-10-11 15:40 -- Doug Peeples
10/11/2018

The number of cities establishing open data programs is growing quickly as city governments realize how beneficial they can be for managing their operations, identifying and correcting problems and encouraging citizen engagement. Read our story from Smart Cities Week Washington, D.C. to learn more.

What will it take to fill the smart cities workforce gap?

Thu, 2018-10-04 12:05 -- Doug Peeples
10/04/2018

There's a talent shortage in most if not all technology-related markets. And because of that the competition for qualified personnel is fierce. Professionals in the education, labor, and job training and placement fields shared their insights during Smart Cities Week on today's training programs, what's expected of them and how employer expectations are shaping them.

How a simulation could help you build a smart city

Wed, 2018-10-03 03:57 -- Doug Peeples
10/02/2018

Imagine you’re the new mayor of a city -- and responsible for leading it into a smart, sustainable future. You need to come up with a vision and prioritize goals and investments. That's the scenario that confronted participants taking part in a Future Cities simulation at Smart Cities Week in Washington, D.C. this week.

NYC's open data platform: turning a big, bright light on how the city works

Thu, 2018-09-27 17:17 -- Doug Peeples
09/26/2018

New York City's government is very serious about sharing its data with the public, and it's not just a nod to transparency. The city sees its data as a resource anyone — from teachers and business owners to artists and students — can use to create value and do good things in their communities.

Enterprise networks are getting bigger (and so are the worries)

Thu, 2018-09-27 17:12 -- Doug Peeples
09/26/2018

As businesses, governments and other entities expand their enterprise networks to better meet their communications needs those networks are getting more complex. That worries IT and telecom professionals for several reasons. But according to a recent survey, they're most concerned about security issues.

Why shuttle buses could be the first driverless vehicles to hit city streets

Thu, 2018-09-20 14:08 -- Doug Peeples
09/20/2018

Autonomous vehicle R&D has been underway for some time. However, predictions for when the driverless rides will be commonplace on city streets vary from a couple of years to more than a decade. If you want to call it a race, autonomous shuttle buses could be the first to cross the finish line. And we may have Las Vegas to thank for it.

Lessons from Louisville: Smart cities emerge from engaged communities

Thu, 2018-09-13 16:47 -- Kevin Ebi
09/13/2018

Change, in the form of new technologies and approaches, is leading to a time of incredible opportunity in Louisville. Learn how the 2018 Readiness Challenge winner brought stakeholders together to devise innovative solutions to combat inequality, improve mobility and safety, and boost engagement.

How ride-hailing is changing urban mobility (and why cities should care)

Thu, 2018-09-13 14:48 -- Doug Peeples
09/13/2018

Ride-hailing services provided by companies like Uber and Lyft have doubled in less than 10 years. While they're still a small fraction of total trips taken in the U.S., their potential impact on urban mobility is a very good reason for cities to include the ride-hailing growth trend in their transportation planning.

How a community college is working to help fill the water industry's talent shortage

Thu, 2018-09-06 16:25 -- Doug Peeples
09/05/2018

Water and wastewater utilities provide essential services for cities. But like other industries, they've faced an engineering skills shortage for years. Read our story to learn how a community college and its partners are collaborating to better prepare students for water industry careers — and keep students' costs down at the same time.

Baltimore's ambitious strategy to dramatically reduce food waste (and feed the hungry)

Thu, 2018-09-06 16:19 -- Doug Peeples
09/05/2018

Americans toss more than 400 pounds of food per person year. That's a lot of wasted food that could be re-directed to feed people in need — and put to other, better uses than filling up landfills. That's exactly what Baltimore's new food recovery strategy intends to accomplish.

Readiness Challenge Update: How close collaboration is advancing Birmingham

Thu, 2018-08-30 21:48 -- Kevin Ebi
08/29/2018

Birmingham, Alabama, a winner of the 2018 Smart Cities Council Readiness Challenge, this week held its Readiness Workshop. See how it’s bringing new life to the community by bringing together everyone from the power company to the university to health care providers.

What happens when a power company and a university get together? They build a microgrid

Wed, 2018-08-29 18:20 -- Doug Peeples
08/28/2018

Georgia Power and the Georgia Institute of Technology each have different (but very complementary) reasons for building a research microgrid together. Read our story to learn about their collaboration and how the partners — and surrounding communities — can benefit from it.

Cities aren't smart if they aren't on: Why cities and utilities must partner

Thu, 2018-08-23 15:24 -- Kevin Ebi
08/23/2018

Cities and electric companies have much to gain by working better together, so how can they do that? Participants in our second Electric Companies Advancing Cities Summit came up with some ideas to help change the regulatory climate and truly address each other’s needs to build real partnerships.

Chicago's smart street lighting program: safer, brighter streets for all

Thu, 2018-08-23 14:14 -- Doug Peeples
08/23/2018

Chicago's Smart Lighting Project will benefit the city and citizens with significant savings in energy and maintenance costs and improved lighting. But when the project launched one of its top priorities was to focus on public safety. Read our story to learn how.

NYC's Blueprint for Energy Efficiency: a big, bold plan to cut pollution

Thu, 2018-08-16 16:45 -- Doug Peeples
08/16/2018

New York City has already done a lot to reduce pollution, but more needs to be done to ensure a sustainable, livable future. A new plan focusing on large building energy efficiency is intended to achieve that goal. Sure. It's a big city plan, but it contains tools cities of any size should be able to use.

What building professionals (and cities) need to know about our energy future

Thu, 2018-08-09 16:15 -- Doug Peeples
08/09/2018

The future energy sector will be far different and far more sophisticated than the energy networks we relied on in the 20th century. And it's essential that city decision makers and building professionals understand what that future will look like.

Smart energy's not just for cities: it's for islands too

Thu, 2018-08-02 16:33 -- Doug Peeples
08/02/2018

Islands and remote communities are similar in that both often need to rely on imported fossil fuels for energy, a typically high cost solution that reduces air quality. A smart energy pilot project off the UK coast seeks to change that — and build a transition roadmap that could be used by other locations in the same situation.

How a hands-on education program is getting kids excited about smart cities

Thu, 2018-08-02 16:26 -- Doug Peeples
08/02/2018

The need for skilled professionals capable of running tomorrow's smart cities is growing faster than the available talent pool. One solution: programs for middle and high school students designed to get them interested in the science of smart cities early on in their education — and thinking about it as a possible career choice.

How traffic simulators can help cities take a bite out of commute times

Thu, 2018-07-26 15:59 -- Doug Peeples
07/25/2018

Reno, Nevada's not known for particularly bad traffic, but its population is steadily growing and that means more cars. Read out story to learn how a local university is working to help the city keep up — and training skilled traffic engineers at the same time.

A novel approach to navigating a city (and not getting lost)

Thu, 2018-07-26 13:48 -- Doug Peeples
07/25/2018

Even with GPS and wayfinding apps it's still easy to get lost in an unfamiliar neighborhood while trying to find a building when you're not sure of its exact location. However, University of Hong Kong researchers have come up with a smart address system they say can eliminate the problem — indoors and out.

The future of urban mobility is happening now. What's your city doing about it?

Thu, 2018-07-12 15:32 -- Doug Peeples
07/12/2018

Many cities are taking a long, hard look at how they can provide equitable and convenient mobility for their citizens. Some are exploring ways to integrate all transport options with their transit networks while others are trying to figure out how to deal with a dramatic surge in the numbers of dockless bikes and electric scooters appearing on city streets.

City project trackers: one way to keep citizens in the loop (and engaged)

Mon, 2018-07-09 17:06 -- Doug Peeples
07/09/2018

Urban environments often look like giant construction zones when buildings are being upgraded or replaced or streets are being repaired or improved. And it can be inconvenient for citizens and visitors trying to get around town. New York City's interactive project is one approach to at least mitigate some of that inconvenience — and give citizens a window on their city.

Why energy storage is a win-win for Amsterdam's stadium and the electric grid

Mon, 2018-07-09 16:59 -- Doug Peeples
07/09/2018

Stadiums are major assets for cities in a number of ways, but there are drawbacks. Many are idle most of the time and when they are being used they draw massive amounts of power, which can have an impact on the local electric grid. Our story outlines the number of ways energy storage can benefit both stadium operations and the surrounding electric grid.

The traffic congestion curse (and some of the nicer ways cities are trying to fix it)

Mon, 2018-07-02 16:54 -- Doug Peeples
07/02/2018

When the city of Cambridge in the UK announced peak hour parking charges in April to deal with air pollution and traffic congestion it didn't go over very well. Residents were furious. But the city recently announced it's investing in a kinder, gentler approach to luring people out of their cars.

How a Juneau homeless housing program is delivering on its promises

Thu, 2018-06-28 17:00 -- Doug Peeples
06/27/2018

A report on the first six months of operation for a Juneau, Alaska homeless housing program made it very clear that the program is doing precisely what it promised to do: provide housing for those who otherwise wouldn't have it and significantly reduce the use of local emergency services.

How San Jose's building on its own momentum (with help from its tech partners)

Thu, 2018-06-21 16:12 -- Doug Peeples
06/20/2018

What started as a relatively small project to improve San Jose's wireless services has grown into something substantially larger: a platform to accommodate next-generation 5G mobile technology, greatly expand broadband internet access and provide opportunities for many more smart city services for its citizens.

Edmonton's smart – and practical – approach to traffic signal upgrades

Thu, 2018-06-21 16:04 -- Doug Peeples
06/21/2018

Traffic in Edmonton, Alberta is far from bad compared to many other cities. But Edmonton is Canada's fastest growing major city, and it does have traffic congestion — and hundreds of the city's intersections need to be upgraded. Read our story to learn why the city is thinking ahead and planning smart tech upgrades.

The first step in ensuring cybersecurity: Understanding what's normal

Thu, 2018-06-14 14:10 -- SCC Partner
06/14/2018

Atlanta has now allocated nearly $15 million to clean up after a March cybersecurity breach that crippled more than a third of its systems. And the recovery effort continues. What can you do? Know what your normal state looks like so you can detect threats quickly. Here’s how.

KC's smart city lesson: Build on your successes (and your data)

Thu, 2018-06-07 14:32 -- Doug Peeples
06/06/2018

With several smart city successes already under its belt, Kansas City is expanding its efforts to improve basic services, shrink the digital divide and more. And city officials are very much relying on data — and a new public/private partnership — to help them do it.

Inside Look: What cities were buying and planning in May 2018

Wed, 2018-06-06 11:05 -- SCC Partner
06/06/2018

What kinds of projects are in the works in cities like yours? In our monthly Inside Look series, we track some of the biggest projects in the planning and implementation phases. From car-sharing and airport modernization to communications networks, these are the hot projects this month.

Food waste is a major problem. Can collaboration solve it?

Thu, 2018-05-31 13:48 -- Doug Peeples
05/31/2018

It's estimated that half of the world's food is wasted. It's a drain on economies and a missed opportunity for putting food on the table for people who don't have enough. A Canadian organization is betting a nationwide collaboration can do far more to reduce food waste than isolated efforts ever will.

Demand response: one way energy users can help themselves and the electric grid

Thu, 2018-05-24 15:33 -- Doug Peeples
05/24/2018

When power supplies get tight electric utilities can buy power from other utilities or fire up additional generation. But those are expensive options. Our story explains how one company is augmenting its solar + energy storage resources in a way that's good for the company's bottom line—and good for the electric grid.

How our Readiness Challenge winners are plotting their smart cities course

Thu, 2018-05-17 13:23 -- Doug Peeples
05/17/2018

SCC's 2018 Readiness Challenge Grant winners have similar goals in their quest to become smart cities, although their approaches to achieving them aren't necessarily the same. Read on to learn how they're planning safe, sustainable and livable places that benefit all of their citizens.

Icons of Infrastructure: Smart Cities - Building Tomorrow's Infrastructure

Wed, 2018-05-16 15:15 -- Anonymous
05/16/2018

The recently concluded Smart Cities Week Silicon Valley conference was a prime example of cities sharing best practices and experiences in their smart cities efforts. In this Icons of Infrastructure story, cities and technology providers offer their views on several smart cities trends and top issues.

Electric companies and cities: working together for smart energy

Tue, 2018-05-15 10:06 -- Doug Peeples
05/14/2018

Smart cities want smart energy solutions to ensure a sustainable energy future. But how do they do it? Now they have an opportunity to collaborate with the most knowledgeable partner they could possibly have: their electric company. The conversation kicked off during the first Electric Companies Advancing Cities Summit at Smart Cities Week Silicon Valley.

Inclusive, affordable mass transit: how do we get it right?

Thu, 2018-05-10 08:42 -- Doug Peeples
05/10/2018

Mass transit can do a lot to help cities serve vulnerable and underserved populations, reduce traffic congestion and pollution and much more. But what does it take to provide an inclusive, affordable transit system people want to use? It's one of the critical topics participants at Smart Cities Week Silicon Valley worked on this week.

Higher-density cities are coming, from Sydney to Seattle. Can they be healthier cities, too?

Thu, 2018-05-03 14:34 -- Doug Peeples
05/02/2018

With city populations growing quickly, higher-density development is inevitable. But how do we ensure those high-density environments are healthy places to live and work? Read on to learn about a group of researchers determined to get the answers to that question.

San Jose's new wireless project: a prime example of "Think big, but start small"

Thu, 2018-04-26 14:01 -- Doug Peeples
04/25/2018

San Jose and AT&T are working together on a project to improve wireless coverage in the city for citizens and first responders. It's not a big project. However, if all goes well it will be the key that unlocks a tremendous number of opportunities to enhance city services — and the city's livability.

NYC's free Wi-Fi network is getting a boost (a reliability boost, that is)

Thu, 2018-04-19 14:32 -- Doug Peeples
04/19/2018

When cities provide a popular service, they need to be sure it's dependable, that everything works as it should — or they'll be getting an earful from frustrated citizens. Learn about the smart technologies New York City is using to ensure its network of kiosks offering free public phone calls and Wi-Fi is always on.

How a university can be a go-to resource for your smart city transformation

Thu, 2018-04-12 14:52 -- Doug Peeples
04/12/2018

The number and variety of smart cities projects are growing, but many cities simply don't have the tools they need to tackle them. We thought you'd like to know about a valuable resource, and source of innovation inspiration, your city may want to consider tapping into.

Partner Spotlight: News for Johnson Controls, Continental, Itron and more

Thu, 2018-04-12 14:35 -- Doug Peeples
04/11/2018

Johnson Controls acquires Triatek… Itron's water upgrade project… Microsoft's IoT investment… Continental wins technology award… Parsons collaborates on education in UAE… UL's certification program for data centers. Click the links for details.

How EVs can make your city's electric grid smarter (and more reliable)

Thu, 2018-03-29 16:19 -- Doug Peeples
03/28/2018

Electric vehicles are a small percentage of vehicle sales, but their numbers are expected to grow over the next several years. And that's good because it's becoming increasingly clear that EVs can contribute to the stability and reliability of city electric grids.

Mass transit ridership has been falling. What do we do about it?

Thu, 2018-03-29 14:37 -- Doug Peeples
03/28/2018

Mass transit ridership in most of the major U.S. transit markets and elsewhere has dropped notably in recent years, and for sometimes complex reasons that can vary from city to city. There are promising solutions, but we need to better understand why fewer people are taking the bus before we decide what the fixes should be.

Fairfax County draws an innovative future that will deliver for generations to come

Thu, 2018-03-22 15:36 -- Kevin Ebi
03/22/2018

Too often, today’s solutions can become tomorrow’s problems. See how Fairfax County, Virginia, a 2018 Smart Cities Council Readiness Challenge finalist, plans to use its current success to build an innovative, inclusive future that lifts the next generation.

Training the smart people we need to run smart cities

Thu, 2018-03-22 15:20 -- Doug Peeples
03/21/2018

The technologies that make smart cities work require highly-trained people who know how to use and manage them. And finding that kind of talent can be difficult. It's a competitive market and schools often can’t provide the necessary training on their own. Fortunately, technology companies are stepping up to fill the gap.

Why cities should be paying attention to their 'green infrastructure'

Thu, 2018-03-22 15:11 -- Doug Peeples
03/22/2018

A quickly growing Alabama city will be part of a study to determine how to best manage urban forests so they contribute to storm water and flooding management. But urban trees can provide several additional benefits city leaders and planners would do well to consider.

Who'd have thought? 4 ways smart city tech saves citizens time

Thu, 2018-03-15 11:31 -- Doug Peeples
03/14/2018

It makes sense: the connected technologies that make it possible for smart cities to better manage traffic flow reduce the amount of time citizens spend in gridlock, saving time and money and reducing the stress of idling in traffic. But there are more ways smart technologies save valuable time.

How two counties are building smarter cities (with platforms they already have)

Thu, 2018-03-08 14:28 -- Doug Peeples
03/08/2018

Two UK counties, now partners on smart street light installations, are ready to take their partnership several steps further. Essex and Hertfordshire county councils will use their street lighting networks as a platform to launch several smart city technology pilot projects. Click to learn more.

Meet our 2018 Smart Cities Council Readiness Challenge winners

Thu, 2018-03-08 03:00 -- Kevin Ebi
03/07/2018

The winners of our second-annual Smart Cities Council Readiness Challenge have made great strides, advancing from pilots and talking about plans toward working on real solutions that deliver meaningful results. Meet our Class of 2018 and learn about the three critical traits they have in common.

Partner Spotlight: News for Cisco, Intel, Sensus, Microsoft and more

Wed, 2018-03-07 17:14 -- Doug Peeples
03/06/2018

Cisco, Intel contributed to Winter Olympic Games… Sensus communications network earns praise… AT&T and Microsoft invest in more renewables… Enel will build energy storage project in Germany… IBI Group picked for UK health and wellbeing hub. Click the links for details.

On the fence about smart street lights? Here are 4 reasons why you shouldn't wait

Thu, 2018-02-22 13:42 -- Doug Peeples
02/21/2018

Are smart street lights near the top of your smart cities transformation to-do list? If not, your city could be left behind. Enhanced public safety and energy efficiency are essential — but smart street lighting networks offer another key smart city ingredient: connectivity. Click to find out how, and why it matters.

Taking a second look at Denver's transit-focused smart city project

Thu, 2018-02-15 14:21 -- Doug Peeples
02/14/2018

Denver, Colorado, already considered a progressive city, is building what you might call a 'smart district' complete with a partially solar-powered microgrid, LED street lighting, preparations for driverless vehicles and more. Click for details about the city's ambitious project. You may find ideas your city can use.

West Sacramento: Smart cities efforts will be felt, not necessarily seen

Thu, 2018-02-15 08:11 -- Kevin Ebi
02/15/2018

From predictive analytics to sentiment analysis, West Sacramento has been dabbling in smart cities projects. Learn how the city used a Smart Cities Council Readiness Workshop to lay the groundwork for more meaningful day-to-day improvements in the lives of all residents.

Readiness Challenge Update: Turning Newport News into an innovation hub

Tue, 2018-02-06 19:57 -- Kevin Ebi
02/06/2018

It started with efforts to solve a tough traffic problem, but Newport News, Virginia, is fully embracing smart cities approaches to improve lives for its residents. See how our 2017 Readiness Challenge finalist used its Readiness Workshop to explore solutions and get ideas for your own city.

How technology is plugging the leaks in water-stressed East African capitals

Thu, 2018-02-01 14:37 -- Doug Peeples
02/01/2018

Water leaks are an expensive nuisance for utilities and their customers. But for water-stressed countries and cities, water losses can be far more serious – and in extreme cases life-threatening. Read on to learn how technology is helping two water-short cities preserve their precious water resources.

Meet our 2018 Readiness Challenge Grant finalists (and one humanitarian grant winner)

Sun, 2018-01-28 19:10 -- Kevin Ebi
01/28/2018

Here are the 10 finalists for this year’s Smart Cities Council Readiness Challenge Grants. Learn about their ambitious visions and the steps they’re already taking to achieve them. Also, hear about our special award to help Puerto Rico recover faster from last year’s devastating hurricane.

Can 'safe injection sites' help curb opioid addiction? Philly and other cities say yes

Thu, 2018-01-25 15:09 -- Doug Peeples
01/25/2018

Philadelphia and other cities want to use safe injection sites — places where opioid addicts can use illegal drugs in a safe, medically-controlled environment — to reduce addiction and overdose-related deaths. Read our story to find out why.

Why it’s time for cities to get smart about energy storage

Thu, 2018-01-18 15:27 -- Doug Peeples
01/18/2018

As cities commit to becoming smarter and more sustainable about how they operate and provide services, energy network upgrades are often the first step on their journey. Read on to learn why energy storage has an increasingly important role in smart city energy transformations — and their success.

Can an earthquake early warning app save lives? LA's betting on it

Thu, 2018-01-18 15:13 -- Doug Peeples
01/18/2018

A minute may not sound like much time, but it can be enough to get out of danger before a major earthquake strikes. That's why Los Angeles is expanding its early warning system to send alerts to smartphones as part of its extensive earthquake preparedness initiative.

Update: All states on board for new public safety broadband network

Thu, 2018-01-04 14:55 -- Doug Peeples
01/04/2018

It's unanimous. All 50 states have decided to opt-in in to what will be the country's first nationwide public safety broadband communications network. Click to learn about how the new network is expected to improve emergency response times, disaster recovery and first responder efficiency.

Trending: the demand for IT professionals continues

Wed, 2017-12-27 16:06 -- Doug Peeples
12/26/2017

A new report says companies in many cities expect to add IT professionals to their staffs in the first half of 2018, as they have been this year. Cities looking for talent to help them with their smart city initiatives should be aware that competition for those skilled professionals is expected to remain strong.

How internet over power lines could be a solution for underserved communities

Thu, 2017-12-14 16:59 -- SCC Staff
12/14/2017

We tend to take internet access for granted, but it's not available in many rural areas or even in some urban and suburban locations. A new field trial of internet over power line technology could be a big step toward bringing high-speed broadband to more people. Read on for details.

Food security for cities: Getting serious about urban farming

Thu, 2017-12-07 14:25 -- Doug Peeples
12/07/2017

Cities face a unique set of problems — and food security has emerged as one of them. As cities grow, agricultural lands around them shrink. Millions of people don't get enough to eat and many cities have food deserts. A Michigan university and the city of Detroit are working together to do something about it.

How an innovative education strategy could help grow the high-tech talent pool

Wed, 2017-12-06 19:13 -- Doug Peeples
12/05/2017

Why would a technology company want to build a public high school on its corporate campus? To give students the skills and knowledge they will need to succeed in high-tech professions — and help fill a troublesome talent gap. Click to learn more.

Lessons storm-prone cities can learn from Puerto Rico (think microgrids)

Thu, 2017-11-30 17:14 -- Doug Peeples
11/30/2017

It's been a little more than two months since Hurricane Maria ripped through Puerto Rico. As of now, a little more than half of Puerto Rico's power has been restored — and that has focused more attention on the contributions microgrids can make to electric grid resilience.

How connected lighting can make the built environment more efficient – and livable

Thu, 2017-11-30 11:50 -- SCC Partner
11/30/2017

Just as connected cities enable greater operating efficiencies and support a more convenient and livable urban environment, there are apps capable of achieving the same for buildings. Read on to find out how connected lighting can improve the way we live and work in the built environment.

How sensors can help city buses "see" better (and make your city safer)

Mon, 2017-11-20 18:29 -- Doug Peeples
11/19/2017

It's commonly accepted that bus riders are far safer than car occupants. But collisions between buses and bicyclists and pedestrians do happen. A collaboration between two tech companies has focused on making buses even more safe — and helping cities keep a closer eye on how safe their streets really are.

Tight budget? Maybe it's time to get creative about your smart city project financing

Thu, 2017-11-16 14:35 -- Doug Peeples
11/15/2017

It's not difficult to justify smart city initiatives that successfully meet the needs of growing urban populations. But it can be a finance officer's nightmare to find a way to pay for them. Click to learn about a new financing option designed to help cash-strapped cities make their smart city vision a reality.

These three tech tools can help keep our citizens safe (and our first responders, too)

Thu, 2017-11-09 14:59 -- Doug Peeples
11/09/2017

Just as driverless cars are expected to dramatically change the future of transportation, innovative technologies are expected to change how police, fire and emergency medical agencies protect citizens — and the personnel who provide those services — for the better.

How we travel is changing – and San Diego (among others) is in the driver's seat

Thu, 2017-11-02 16:18 -- Doug Peeples
11/02/2017

Autonomous cars — vehicles that drive themselves — are coming. And they will change (and challenge) almost everything we think we know about urban mobility. Read on for examples of how San Diego and other regions are responding to the challenge. Think of them as pioneers, and consider the possibility that your city could be one, too.

Bristol takes the lead as the UK's smartest smart city. Here's why...

Thu, 2017-10-26 16:02 -- Doug Peeples
10/25/2017

The UK has long been considered a hotbed of smart city innovation and progress, with London at the top of the list. But as of earlier this week, that spotlight is shining on Bristol. Read our story to find out why (and what your city can do to be like Bristol).

How Brooklyn is on the cusp of getting a community-owned microgrid

Thu, 2017-10-19 20:26 -- SCC Partner
10/19/2017

For resilience and other reasons, microgrids are worth considering, but the journey to build one can be quite bumpy. There are already 800 people on the waiting list for one that’s about to come online in Brooklyn. Here’s what it took — and where else the concept could work.

What cities can do with social safety nets (and data) to reduce opioid addiction and deaths

Thu, 2017-10-12 14:45 -- Doug Peeples
10/11/2017

Opioids (both prescribed and illegal) cause more than 33,000 accidental deaths annually in the U.S. While city medical and social service agencies have committed to finding new ways to treat addiction, it's an extremely difficult task for several reasons. Read on to learn about new approaches, the challenges to implementing them and why data is essential.

Why partnerships and engagement are key strategies for building smart transportation networks

Thu, 2017-10-12 14:33 -- Doug Peeples
10/11/2017

Columbus, Ohio was awarded $50 million in the U.S. DOT's Smart City Challenge last year for its proposal to build a smarter, safer transportation network. Smart Cities Week attendees received a progress report on what the city and its partners have been doing since then — and why.

Yes, we DO need to provide mobility for everyone

Thu, 2017-10-05 12:29 -- Doug Peeples
10/05/2017

When we say inclusive mobility, it sounds fairly straightforward: access to affordable transportation for everyone. Providing equitable mobility for everyone might not be easy, but it's essential if we're all to have the opportunities to improve our quality of life. Read our story from Smart Cities Week to learn more.

Driverless cars: They're about a whole lot more than roads and traffic signals

Wed, 2017-10-04 15:25 -- Doug Peeples
10/04/2017

Driverless vehicles are expected to have a major impact on cities within the next few years, and that impact will reach far beyond roads and streets, according to a panel of experts speaking at Smart Cities Week 2017. Read on to learn why they say city planners probably have a much bigger job ahead of them than they expect.

How cities are starting to see the light about smart streetlights

Thu, 2017-08-17 12:01 -- Doug Peeples
08/17/2017

Smart streetlights are a typical first step for smart city upgrades. They're an ideal showcase to familiarize citizens with smart technologies, plus the payoff in energy savings is immediate. And city leaders are realizing that smart streetlights can do a lot more to enhance a city's livability than simply light up their streets.

How 5 cities are using technology to reduce the harmful effects of dirty air

Tue, 2017-08-08 09:47 -- Compassionate C...
08/07/2017

Outdoor air pollution claims 1.3 million lives every year. Children are particularly at risk. And the number of deaths is expected to rise due to climate change. Read how cities from Hamburg to Oakland are using data, sensors and some novel technologies to reduce death and disease from dirty air.

How breastfeeding helps moms, babies and entire communities (and the role tech plays)

Wed, 2017-08-02 12:57 -- Compassionate C...
08/01/2017

The nutritional benefits of breastfeeding are pretty well known. But what about the economic advantages? Reports suggest that every $1 invested in breastfeeding generates $35 in economic returns. Read more about global efforts to encourage breastfeeding – and how technology is helping.

Ripe for growth: Amid world food crisis, agtech to the rescue

Tue, 2017-08-01 13:50 -- Compassionate C...
08/01/2017

A Singapore news site calls agriculture technology “the new farming tool to boost food security.” Venture arms of tech giants Qualcomm and Cisco recently invested in an Israeli digital ag startup. New Zealand farmers are cutting costs with IoT technology from Schneider Electric. Clearly agtech is booming; read why it matters.

How and why connected cars and IoT will drive massive cybersecurity spending

Thu, 2017-07-27 11:25 -- Doug Peeples
07/26/2017

Accelerated spending on cybersecurity is widely anticipated in all forms of transportation as they become increasingly connected — and vulnerable. So now would be the ideal time for cities preparing for connected and driverless cars to consider their cybersecurity readiness if they haven't done it already.

STEM progress? Big jump in girls and minorities taking AP computer science exam

Wed, 2017-07-26 12:22 -- Compassionate C...
07/25/2017

A Seattle nonprofit crunched the numbers from the AP College Board and found the number of girls taking the AP computer science exam doubled this year over 2016 and the number of minorities nearly tripled. But Code.org's CEO says there's still more work to do.

From apps to arms to spendy cleanups: Is there a right way to handle homeless camps?

Tue, 2017-07-25 14:05 -- Compassionate C...
07/25/2017

Homeless camps have grown 30% in Oakland in the last two years. They're growing in Honolulu too, prompting one councilman to propose armed park rangers to keep public spaces safe. Is that the solution? Are there better ones? Learn what cities from Anchorage to Sydney are doing.

Panasonic's Kid Witness News global summit nurtures a new generation of leaders

Mon, 2017-07-24 12:28 -- Compassionate C...
07/24/2017

Panasonic's Kid Witness News educational program is now in 18 countries, supplying schools with video production equipment that enables students to report on the world through their eyes. Next week the company hosts its first KWN summit in Japan. It promises to be eye-opening; find out why.

From the UK: A glimpse at fascinating new technologies with life-changing potential

Wed, 2017-07-19 12:43 -- Compassionate C...
07/18/2017

A post from the UK offers a fascinating glimpse at 24 technologies that could potentially improve a lot of lives. We provide a peek at five that are focused on wellness, including a Skype-like app for older folks and 3D printed bionic hands for amputees.

Connecting rural communities: New efforts to help those left behind

Tue, 2017-07-18 06:44 -- Compassionate C...
07/17/2017

Mention smart cities and most think of big cities steeped in the Internet of Things, with free Wi-Fi hotspots on every corner. But if the goal is to use smart technologies to improve lives and livelihoods, small rural communities have some big needs. Read what companies like AT&T and Microsoft are doing about that.

Facial recognition, DNA matching help reunite China's homeless with their families

Mon, 2017-07-17 06:38 -- Compassionate C...
07/16/2017

Shanghai Rescue Station uses advanced technologies to help locate the families of the homeless and mentally ill people it rescues every year, including seniors and children. And it's working; read how DNA testing helped reunite a daughter with her 70-year-old father after he'd been missing 20 years.

$1 million Toyota impact grant promotes upward mobility for homeless women and children

Wed, 2017-07-12 11:55 -- Compassionate C...
07/12/2017

Many large companies are locating in Collin County, Texas and thousands of new homes are being built there. Yet approximately 3,000 women in the county experience homelessness; many of them have children. Read how a new nonprofit collaborative, aided by a $1 million grant, aims to help them.

Battling diabetes: Tech giants, inventors, mayors and service clubs are on the front lines

Tue, 2017-07-11 15:45 -- Compassionate C...
07/10/2017

As the world’s diabetes epidemic worsens, IBM, Qualcomm and Microsoft technologies have joined the battle. Columbus, Georgia’s mayor has signed on. So have 47,000 Lions Clubs. And then there's Dana Lewis; don't miss what she's doing to help diabetes sufferers like herself.

New initiatives take on youth homelessness. Will they help?

Mon, 2017-07-10 14:30 -- Compassionate C...
07/10/2017

As the number of young people without stable housing grows to crisis levels in many parts of the world, efforts to intervene multiply. Boston public schools will have homeless liaisons. Social Benefit Bonds are funding a pilot in Queensland. Even the private sector is stepping up.

Update: Are we really making progress on self-driving cars?

Wed, 2017-06-28 16:55 -- Doug Peeples
06/27/2017

There are some tough questions that need answers as states, cities and regions decide how (and how much) they're going to accommodate autonomous vehicles – self-driving cars, trucks and more. Some jurisdictions are moving forward quickly while others are holding back. Our story explains some of the reasons why.

How Okotoks became a North American water conservation leader

Thu, 2017-06-22 13:14 -- Doug Peeples
06/22/2017

Canadians use a lot of water. The country is ranked among the highest in the world for water consumption. So it's more than a little surprising that a small Alberta town has emerged as a role model for its efforts to reduce water use. Read our story to learn how they did it.

Is your city stuck in traffic? Maybe you should try Louisville's approach

Wed, 2017-06-14 14:28 -- Doug Peeples
06/14/2017

Louisville, Kentucky isn't a major metropolis but it has big city traffic problems. It's ranked as one of the top 50 in the country for traffic congestion. So the city's turning to technology solutions for help – and planning to tackle traffic snarls in a way that might appeal to other cities with similar headaches.

Challenge Grant Update: How Orlando's planning for smart growth

Thu, 2017-06-08 22:42 -- Kevin Ebi
06/08/2017

Orlando has one of the fastest-growing job markets in the U.S. — which is also making its population one of the fastest-growing too. Learn how it’s using its Smart Cities Council Readiness Challenge Grant to grow smarter to stretch resources and deliver a strong quality of life.

New UK report offers insights on technologies that battle social isolation and loneliness

Wed, 2017-05-24 11:59 -- Compassionate C...
05/23/2017

Innovative technologies can improve the physical and mental well-being of people who suffer from loneliness and lack of social connections. A new report highlights examples, such as Australia's InTouch Living system.

Miami's enhanced resilience plan: a lesson for other cities?

Thu, 2017-02-09 15:42 -- Doug Peeples
02/09/2017

Like many large cities, Miami is wrestling with the challenges of growing populations and aging infrastructure. But the coastal city has another big problem: increasingly frequent tidal flooding. If your city is facing similar challenges, Miami's action plan may provide ideas and solutions you can use.