I’m back with another bonus episode of the podcast that brings together multiple guests answers to the question “where to next with Smart Cities and Communities?” As it’s #selfcareseptember to round out the theme of health and wellbeing, this time I’m sharing with you the answers from our guests this month.
Previous guests featured in this episode:
- Katherine Flynn from Episode 127
- Monica Olyslagers from Episode 128
- Dr. Katherine Loflin from Episode 129
- Sophia Arkinstall from Episode 130
- Declan Edwards from Episode 132 (coming soon)
There are a couple of main themes in this episode. You’ll hear these guests talk a lot about using data for various aspects of health and safety within cities, and the privacy implications that come from that, so how do we strike that balance between protecting individual privacy but also using data to keep people safe and well and supported when they’re experiencing health or wellbeing challenges, and as Declan puts it, between Smart citizens and happy citizens.
All the guests agree that it won’t be a one-size-fits-all solution for any place or person, and in fact there are parallels to be drawn between the way medicine is moving to a personalised health care model using a mix of technological advances and greater human engagement in health practices, and the way cities and communities need to use the technology available and also have great citizen engagement practices.
The other big theme that came through is the question of WHY or the concept of SO WHAT. When thinking about where to next for Smart Cities and Communities, it’s essential that we don’t lose sight of the reasons it matters to have Smarter Cities and Communities in the first place. As I discussed with Declan, we don’t want to end up in that dystopian future so we have to be involved today in order to be creating the places we want to live in tomorrow.
As Dr. Katherine Loflin says, “once you screw it up it’s a lot harder to get it back on track than it is to get it right in the first place.” So let’s aim to get keep that in focus and work towards prevention rather than cure.
You will notice in this episode and also in previous episodes in September, I mention my Churchill fellowship report, which is finally finished and you can read it here, but I will also be doing an update episode of the podcast soon detailing my findings, so stay tuned for that!
As always I hope you enjoy listening to this episode as much as I enjoyed making it.
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The Smart Community Podcast is produced by Ellen Ronalds Keene.