Building Smarter Cities | The World Bank Group
For the first time in history more than half of the world’s population lives in cities. Over 90 percent of urban growth is occurring in the developing world, adding an estimated 70 million new residents to urban areas each year. Demand for services in urban areas is therefore increasing exponentially, and the capacity of local governments to manage this demand is challenged. Moreover, even though private sector has been successful in leveraging technology to improve service delivery and efficiency, governments have failed to fully embrace the benefits that these innovations bring. There is a growing need for governments to be able to deliver more services in a more efficient and effective way with limited resources. Cities need to innovate and create new tools and approaches.

Building Smarter Cities | The World Bank Group

For the first time in history more than half of the world’s population lives in cities. Over 90 percent of urban growth is occurring in the developing world, adding an estimated 70 million new residents to urban areas each year. Demand for services in urban areas is therefore increasing exponentially, and the capacity of local governments to manage this demand is challenged. Moreover, even though private sector has been successful in leveraging technology to improve service delivery and efficiency, governments have failed to fully embrace the benefits that these innovations bring. There is a growing need for governments to be able to deliver more services in a more efficient and effective way with limited resources. Cities need to innovate and create new tools and approaches.

How Social Listening Can Improve Your Daily Commute | A Smarter Planet Blog
If you run over a pothole or perhaps a train is delayed on your morning commute, what do you do? It’s unlikely that you would pick up the phone to call the city to report it or attend a meeting on the topic being held by your local government.  The more likely scenario is that you would take to social media to mention the location of the pothole or express your frustration with the delay.
Today’s citizens can be seen as engaged but in a very different manner.  Twitter, Facebook and other social channels serve as a 24/7 town hall meeting for an increasing number of us digitally connected citizens.  Social listening and analysis can be a valuable tool for cities.

How Social Listening Can Improve Your Daily Commute | A Smarter Planet Blog

If you run over a pothole or perhaps a train is delayed on your morning commute, what do you do? It’s unlikely that you would pick up the phone to call the city to report it or attend a meeting on the topic being held by your local government.  The more likely scenario is that you would take to social media to mention the location of the pothole or express your frustration with the delay.

Today’s citizens can be seen as engaged but in a very different manner.  Twitter, Facebook and other social channels serve as a 24/7 town hall meeting for an increasing number of us digitally connected citizens.  Social listening and analysis can be a valuable tool for cities.

How Citizen Mapmakers are Changing the Stories of our Cities
“Individuals inside cities and elsewhere are creating maps for themselves and in fact giving us their own narrative of what a cityscape is about. They are telling us what is important to them, and they’re mapping the kinds of things that previously would not be mapped. It’s becoming part of the creation of a culture of a city.”
More on This Big City

How Citizen Mapmakers are Changing the Stories of our Cities

“Individuals inside cities and elsewhere are creating maps for themselves and in fact giving us their own narrative of what a cityscape is about. They are telling us what is important to them, and they’re mapping the kinds of things that previously would not be mapped. It’s becoming part of the creation of a culture of a city.”

More on This Big City

SeeClickFix Announces Launch of Innovative New Facebook Application 
With   the launch of its new Facebook application, SeeClickFix proudly   announces yet another tool for empowering citizens and improving   communities. Available today, the SeeClickFix App allows Facebook users   to report and monitor non-emergency community issues. It also connects   them with neighbors to address their shared concerns ranging from bugs   in the municipal fabric such as potholes and graffiti to feature   requests such as new trees and murals.With   over 50,000 reported issues already resolved through SeeClickFix.com   and its mobile phone applications, the most important feature of the new   Facebook App will be the offline results generated from users’ online   activity. It will tie directly into SeeClickFix’s already-powerful   reporting platform, allowing citizens to broadcast their issues directly   to the site’s 14,000 registered public officials.

SeeClickFix Announces Launch of Innovative New Facebook Application

With the launch of its new Facebook application, SeeClickFix proudly announces yet another tool for empowering citizens and improving communities. Available today, the SeeClickFix App allows Facebook users to report and monitor non-emergency community issues. It also connects them with neighbors to address their shared concerns ranging from bugs in the municipal fabric such as potholes and graffiti to feature requests such as new trees and murals.

With over 50,000 reported issues already resolved through SeeClickFix.com and its mobile phone applications, the most important feature of the new Facebook App will be the offline results generated from users’ online activity. It will tie directly into SeeClickFix’s already-powerful reporting platform, allowing citizens to broadcast their issues directly to the site’s 14,000 registered public officials.

Next American City » Columns » Real-time Data: A Recipe for Happier Citizens
There are certain things in life that most everyone would avoid if  they could. Things like sitting in traffic, waiting in a slow-moving  line at a government office, or searching for a non-existent parking  space. One could argue that these are just a face of modern life in 21st  century cities. However, there’s enormous potential for governments to  provide data – particularly live real-time data feeds – to help citizens  eliminate some of these unpleasant experiences from our everyday lives.
One of the most basic is the web camera feed. To help state residents  avoid a lengthy wait at the local DMV office, the Alaskan Division of  Motor Vehicles publishes web cam images of the waiting area from each of its offices. Taking the idea a step further, the Singaporean government has created an online “queue watch”  website for area health clinics. Citizens can go online and see the  number of patients waiting, along with live web camera images of queues  at registration and the pharmacy. In addition, the site uses this data  to recommend off-peak periods to visit.
Aside from cameras and queues, one of the main areas that governments  are looking to provide real-time data is travel. In the San Francisco  Bay Area, a new pilot program has just launched to give commuters information about their travel options between San Jose and San Francisco. Called Networked Traveler,  the website allows visitors to enter an origin, destination, and travel  time – and provides estimates of travel time, cost and carbon emissions  between driving, bus and commuter train using real-time data. In  addition, the site provides real-time availability data at select park  and ride lots. An accompanying mobile phone application means commuters  can check their options on the go.
As more cities install cameras and sensors to collect data about what’s happening on the ground (as well as under  and above it), the opportunities for real-time data feeds will only  grow. Hopefully, more cities will take advantage of this and provide  their citizens with access to this kind of information. Provided that  people can use it to avoid wasting a couple hours – they’ll be all the  happier.

Next American City » Columns » Real-time Data: A Recipe for Happier Citizens

There are certain things in life that most everyone would avoid if they could. Things like sitting in traffic, waiting in a slow-moving line at a government office, or searching for a non-existent parking space. One could argue that these are just a face of modern life in 21st century cities. However, there’s enormous potential for governments to provide data – particularly live real-time data feeds – to help citizens eliminate some of these unpleasant experiences from our everyday lives.

One of the most basic is the web camera feed. To help state residents avoid a lengthy wait at the local DMV office, the Alaskan Division of Motor Vehicles publishes web cam images of the waiting area from each of its offices. Taking the idea a step further, the Singaporean government has created an online “queue watch” website for area health clinics. Citizens can go online and see the number of patients waiting, along with live web camera images of queues at registration and the pharmacy. In addition, the site uses this data to recommend off-peak periods to visit.

Aside from cameras and queues, one of the main areas that governments are looking to provide real-time data is travel. In the San Francisco Bay Area, a new pilot program has just launched to give commuters information about their travel options between San Jose and San Francisco. Called Networked Traveler, the website allows visitors to enter an origin, destination, and travel time – and provides estimates of travel time, cost and carbon emissions between driving, bus and commuter train using real-time data. In addition, the site provides real-time availability data at select park and ride lots. An accompanying mobile phone application means commuters can check their options on the go.

As more cities install cameras and sensors to collect data about what’s happening on the ground (as well as under and above it), the opportunities for real-time data feeds will only grow. Hopefully, more cities will take advantage of this and provide their citizens with access to this kind of information. Provided that people can use it to avoid wasting a couple hours – they’ll be all the happier.

CovJam: Citizens in the driving seat (via IBMSmarterPlanetUK)

Coventry City Council wanted to engage in deeper, more dynamic conversations with all stakeholders about future directions for the city of Coventry. The city ran a three-day IBM Jam, enabling more than 800 different stakeholders to engage in debate in an interactive online forum. IBM and the Council are using sophisticated analytical tools to dig deep into the resulting data and unearth valuable insight and intelligence that will guide and inspire the city in its journey to becoming a Smarter City.

Greenopolis makes a very simple – yet powerful – promise to you, our user:

We are about doing good.

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Through both our On-Line site of Greenopolis and our physical, On-Street presence of Greenopolis Recycling Kiosks, we allow our customers to do actual, “trackable” good for the planet. We also try to make your everyday life better by offering rewards for helping the world and changing the way we handle natural resource and recyclables.