In this episode of the Smart Community Podcast, Zoe has an interesting chat with Samson Williams, Principal Consultant at Axes and Eggs, a thinktank and digital advisor on emerging technologies. Samson shares a bit about his work at Axes and Eggs, and why his background in anthropology sparked his interest in Smart Communities. He also has a really interesting perspective on how the US is embracing Smart concepts, and shares about the problem of food deserts, financial deserts, and 3G being a luxury. Zoe and Samson finish their conversation discussing the emerging trends of the millennial generation becoming policy and decision makers, and the negative health impacts of technology making life more convenient.

You will hear that this episode was recorded before Zoe left on her Churchill Fellowship, and she is talking about her trip to the US in the future, but it’s now actually in the past, and you can hear Zoe’s wrap up of each stage of her trip on her special podcast about her Churchill Fellowship. It’s available exclusively to people who support the Smart Community Podcast on Pozible. Zoe’s trip is still ongoing, but you can hear about Zoe’s visits to Orlando and Denver, among other places, by going to searching for My Smart Community and hit Support.

Now, on with the episode, and as always, we hope you enjoy listening to this episode as much as we enjoyed making it!

Listen here:

What we cover in this episode:

  • Samson’s work at Axes and Eggs, and why he’s passionate about the intersection of emerging technology with culture and community
  • Why wifi is becoming a human right
  • How Samson’s background in Anthropology sparked his interest in the concept of Smart Cities and Smart Communities
  • Why Smart concepts are so important as we face the impacts of climate change
  • How the US is embracing Smart concepts, and the problem of food, financial and wifi deserts
  • Three projects Axes and Eggs is currently working on
  • What’s needed to better integrate across disciplines, governments and industries
  • The emerging trends of data privacy, the millennial generation becoming policy and decision makers and the negative health impacts of technology making life more convenient


“As your government transitions to everything digital you can create at risk and marginalised communities if they can’t access your government services because they’ve gone digital. So wifi becomes a human right.”

“Civilisation is cities, so when we talk about how people will interact and build cities of the future we look at historically…how people came together to build their cities, because it’s basically how do we want to collaborate to live in close proximity to each other? That’s always very interesting, and technology is just going to change the way we do it.”

“A Smart City is one that’s connected, easily walkable, that’s accessible to everyone, not just people who can’t afford it. Because your city’s not that Smart if it just creates new barriers to accessing basic government services as well as quality of life.”

“All integration starts with a conversation. We don’t have the diplomats or the ambassadors as we used ot have, that are just cross functionally sharing ideas, lessons learned…we just need to have those frank and honest conversations.”

[On Leapfrogging into Obesity]

“Whenever there’s a digital transformation you also get a waist-size transformation because when you leapfrog with technology, the technology brings a level of sedentary lifestyle, and with that new sedentary lifestyle people just get fatter.”


Connect with Samson on LinkedIn or on other social media @hustlefundbaby or find Axes and Eggs on socials @axesandeggs

Connect with me via email:

Connect via LinkedIn, Twitter and Facebook @smartcommpod

The Smart Community Podcast is produced by Ellen Ronalds Keene.

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.

The Smart Community Podcast

The Smart Community Podcast is a hub where smart and exciting people from all around the world come to discuss all things Smart City, Smart Town, Smart Region - anything that makes a place more liveable. Together we can create our own Smart Communities.


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