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- Smart cities are not merely based on the technology involved, but also on the interaction between human beings and technology. Building on this interaction, two types of smart cities can be identified: prescriptive smart cities, doing mental harm to their citizens; and co-ordinating smart cities which stimulate people mentally by engaging them in addressing complex problems and human differences.
- Smart cities are human-centric organisations and systems featured by a variety of different stakeholders, ranging from users and individuals, to the public and private sectors. Due to the interconnectivity-based nature, debates on smart cities should adopt a multistakeholder, horizontal, and multi-layered (local, regional, national, and international) approach. They should also highlight the current dichotomy between smart cities, oriented towards funding and investment goals, and digital cities, redirecting the approach toward a citizen- and human-centric one.
- Smart cities represent enablers of the achievement of the sustainable development goals (SDGs). To facilitate the development of smart cities and address the related governance challenge, a multiplicity approach is required through a symbiotic combination of different stakeholders and technologies.
- Some of the smart cities governance challenges include data protection, privacy, and cybersecurity. As data collection represents an important resource for smart cities, awareness should be raised in a more effective way on the amount of information that individuals – knowingly and unknowingly – provide; on the distinction between personal, non-personal, and business data; and, on the concept of data sharing for good meant to foster the maximisation of societal benefits of the technology involved. Additionally, trade secrets need to be taken into account and frameworks for mandatory data sharing by business entities should be further discussed.