Smart Cities Technology Assessment
Advances in sensing and analytical technologies, collectively referred to as "smart city technologies," may enhance municipal transportation, public safety, and other areas. Such applications can allow for improved efficiency, more informed long-term planning, and heightened public engagement in city operations. Some examples of smart city technologies include intelligent transportation systems, adaptive streetlights, and inter-departmental data access and collaboration. While many cities deploy smart city technologies, wide variations exist in how they are funded and operated. Cities may fund and operate their own technologies or work in coordination with private companies to deploy them. In some cases, cities may rely completely on private actors to obtain and operate technologies. Smart city technology deployments have run into challenges over time. These include the underperformance of technologies, municipal employees' limited capacity to operate technologies, exposure to cybersecurity threats, and complaints from privacy and civil liberty advocates about the collection and use of data generated by these technologies. GAO's technical assessment will discuss (1) smart technologies that impact municipalities' ability to deliver services; (2) benefits and challenges associated with these technologies; and (3) policy options that may enhance these benefits and mitigate these challenges.
Short title:
Smart Cities Technology Assessment
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Project leader:
Science, Technology Assessment, and Analytics team of the U.S. Government Accountability Office (GAO) (STAA)
United States of America