The digital age allows citizens to have more access to data and to communicate their needs more seamlessly than ever before. With this renewed power and continued rapid urbanisation, the public sector must step up to the plate and be just as responsive with their community. A hyperconnected world can have great benefits but in order for the public sector to take advantage of this, many are looking to transform into cities of the future.
Modern technology can enable 'smart' approaches for addressing and managing critical issues for communities such as city traffic management, waste management, utility management and environmental sustainability. It can also streamline services offered by the public sector, transforming transactions into an online, real-time experience. Ultimately, technology can help create a more efficient and reliable city for the citizens.
But how can this become reality? It essentially comes down to two things – the right leadership vision and the requisite support from citizens.
There are several challenges that come from this.
The citizen is key in making future smart cities real. Before anything can change, an organisation needs to have the right people in place and the right involvement from the community, ensuring they are aware of the objectives and developments to come and how it will progress towards them. As the needs and desires overtake the budgetary bottom line, agencies must look at their approach to providing information and services required. Transparency in work and efficiency in technological advancements must be ensured. This in turn could mean increased investment and reallocation of resources, creating a dramatic shift which can sometimes be difficult for public entities to take on.
In 2014, there were 105 mobile subscriptions for every 100 people worldwide. With over 90 per cent of adults owning a smartphone or mobile phone with the ability to access internet, use video and audio recording and share with contacts, the potential for the public sector is immense. The ability to use apps and collect data can empower organisations. But the phones must also be on a powerful network in order to make the most of this and public Wi-Fi can have some inherent issues, making it another barrier that must be considered.
Despite these challenges, there are significant benefits to come from implementing these strategies and moving towards the idea of a city of the future.
Advancements in mobility, data and the analysis of these, as well as the advent of cloud technologies, means increased innovation and connection. While seemingly overwhelming, it can greatly change how public organisations operate, for the better.
One of the best ways to overcome the challenges facing the public sector is to enlist a powerful partner. AC3 and HPE have partnered to assist the public sector achieve goals and see positive transformation.
The many innovations available to the public enable agencies to be more efficient, agile and resilient, and help it drive economic growth, improve quality of life and create sustainable communities. So, what are you waiting for? Contact us today.