IBM’s People for Smarter Cities, partnered with the video platform Zooppa, asked citizens for ideas on how to make cities smarter. The project came from the idea that ordinary people making an effort to change their world result in extraordinary things. Out of 80 short videos, 8 were chosen as the best and smartest ideas for water, public safety, healthcare and education. The winning ideas were chosen based on whether they were visionary, efficient, actionable, and intelligent. The winning submissions can be seen here: http://people4smartercities.com/series/citizens-submit-winning-ideas-improve-their-cities.
IBM also recently announced that it is working with the cities of Minneapolis, Minnesota and Montpellier, France to use data in making decisions about transportation, water and emergency management. IBM has created thousands of Smarter Cities that use data to make decisions and respond to challenges. Cities have been able to use Big Data and analytics to address strategic issues.
Now there are three new cloud-based Smarter Cities management centers for transportation, water and emergency management. The Transportation Management tool has been shown to help reduce traffic congestion in cities by 25%. The Water Management tool has been able to help reduce leaks by 20% in some cities. The Emergency Management tool provides a central point for emergency management and has been able to reduce response time by 25%.
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Other recent initiatives include IBM’s efforts to help Rio De Janeiro become smarter by creating a new city operations plan. In Lima, Peru Smarter Cities highlights the first billboard that produces drinking water from thin air. Another interesting story is the “House for Trees” initiative in Ho Chi Minh, which seeks to reconnect people with the environment.
This week People For Smarter Cities highlights a story about transportation in Africa. Since many cities in sub-Saharan Africa lack adequate public transportation, people have begun to use boda-bodas, or bicycle taxis. These bicycles are an example of how sustainable development benefits citizens, as cities around the world have begun operating public bicycle-sharing systems. This form of transport is better for the environment as well as being affordable and easy to maneuver.
Images courtesy of IBM.