Sharing Cities Magazine - February 2019

Why did we conduct this research:

The sharing and platform economy do have a direct potential impact on the role of cities per se (institutions). In this edition of the magazine, we have taken the example of DigiTel, Tel Aviv's ambitious digital platform where more than half of the city's citizens have already signed up. 

Key findings:

  • The role of data (and its protection) has to be at the core of any platform. 
  • Cities and citizens are changing, and hence, the traditional understanding of governance should evolve too. By this, transforming cities as platforms where interaction is at the core is a significant improvement that cities worldwide should aspire too. Nevertheless, all the challenges arising from this should be carefully studied. The case of DigiTel is an excellent first example.
  • Data collection, open data and privacy are permanent concerns for both municipalities and citizens. 

What do we see at the intersection of Sharing and Smart Cities? The 2018 Sharing Cities Summit in Barcelona was connected to its massive Smart City Expo. As such, it has been the perfect occasion to define an answer to this question. Walking around at the Expo you see a thousand different ways to collect and manage data and how these can be used to manage assets and resources efficiently. This is typical for Smart Cities. In contrast, the Sharing Cities Summit and the Sharing Cities track at the Expo were focussed on how citizens and organizations can collaborate to create a city where all citizens have access to what they need to live a happy, connected and sustainable life. The contrast is clear: smart cities are more about sensors, sharing cities are more about people. Yet naturally, these two ways of urban development find each other in some of the world’s most interesting projects that all have one thing in common: approaching the city as a platform.

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