In this episode of the Smart City Podcast, you’ll hear Part 2 of my conversation with Tim Rastall. If you missed Part 1, it’s Episode 27 and we covered Tim’s background and projects he is working on, as well as where NZ is at when it comes to Smart Cities. In this episode, Part 2, we discuss the Agile approach to building relationships and collaborating across disciplines as well as being okay with failure. For those of you who don’t know Agile is a project methodology that started off in the software development world but now is utilised more widely. Agile is about being able to work easily and quickly and in an ever-changing environment and has set tools and processes that are used to allow for a iterative approach. Enough on Agile, I’ll put a link in the show notes of an article that explains it pretty well. Tim and I talk about the importance of communication in being Smart and using data to improve efficiency. Tim also has some interesting and exciting ideas about emerging trends.

Listen here:


“when you see public private partnerships that go well, it’s because there are some very clear guiding principles and they are taking an Agile approach to building [relationships]”

“[failure] is actually where you learn the most and get the most benefit…when you are making a new thing, you can’t expect to get it right the first time so you have to expect to fail and it’s that failure and the ability to adapt and change that actually allows you to produce something great”

“Technology is just an enabler, the thing that makes a Smart City is the individuals in the city”

“with enough input data and enough training information, you can get to a stage where a city platform can identify a problem occurring well in advance of a human”

What we covered:

  • Building relationships across industries, academia and government
  • An Agile approach to Smart Cities and being okay with and learning from failure
  • Thinking of technology purely as an enabler and focusing on the liveability of the individuals
  • Looking at and learning from Songdo in South Korea
  • The importance of public engagement and design thinking
  • Decision making platforms and including humans as sensors
  • Breaking down silos and how communication can make a city smarter
  • Using real data to make decisions about efficiency and bringing people along the journey
  • Second-order effects that are emerging and self-aware cities
  • Taking flying taxis seriously


Wellington Our City Tomorrow

Larry Page’s flying taxis in NZ

China’s Ehang

Agile Project Methodology Article


Connect with Tim via email tim.rastall@ise.nzLinkedIn, Twitter @timrastall

Connect with me via email:, Twitter or Facebook @smartcitypod

The Smart City Podcast is produced by Ellen Ronalds Keene.canv

My Smart Community

My Smart Community offers consulting and media services with a focus on making our communities more accessible, liveable and sustainable for all. We have a focus on Smart Mobility, Smart project management, Smart technology in regional communities, dealing with disruption and facilitating genuine collaboration. As well as podcast production, communication and media advisory and engagement, keynote speaking, moderating, master of ceremonies and workshop design and facilitation.

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