Cities around the globe want to innovate using digital technologies. Local leaders see the possibilities for using artificial intelligence, sensors, virtual reality and other technologies to re-imagine how their cities deliver energy, move people, improve public safety and health, create jobs, and provide education.
But digital technologies alone will not be able to solve the hardest issues we face in our communities. We also need the citizen perspective. Just as businesses are shifting from delivering end products to providing open platforms–where customers can co-develop and use products and services, access relevant data, and interact directly with each other to create their own value–cities and their ecosystem partners will need to put constituents at the centre of their efforts. They will need to master the quid pro quo, as companies are doing with their customers, and deliver value in the form of greater responsiveness, personalised experiences, inclusiveness, and community connection.
In doing so, they will honour their mission and inspire transformational thinking. Citizens who interact consistently with their local government and the companies and non-profits who serve them can offer deep insight into the roadblocks that hinder service delivery and hamper economic prosperity. They can actively contribute solutions that help to remove those roadblocks, whether the challenge is to improve energy sustainability, reduce crime, or plan a new housing development.
By combining constituent input with data from companies, non-profits, and academia, cities can create a continuous, collaborative knowledge exchange that will enable progress towards a better quality of life for everyone.
We’ve been studying how urban leaders can move their cities intelligently toward their goals. This paper from our SAP Insights Research Center offers city leaders suggestions they can implement now to create a platform-enabled, citizen-centric future. The authors of this provide four suggestions city leaders can take now to move more intelligently toward their goals.
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