Today’s cities are pervaded by growing networks of connected technologies to generate actionable, often real-time data about themselves and their citizens. Relying on ubiquitous telecommunications technologies to provide connectivity to sensor networks and set actuation devices into operation, smart cities routinely collect information on cities’ air quality, temperature, noise, street and pedestrian traffic, parking capacity, distribution of government services, emergency situations, and crowd sentiments, among other data points.
How can cities provide both open data and privacy? FPF's City of Seattle Open Data Risk Assessment report is an interesting way to assess the balance. The Report provides tools and guidance to the City of Seattle and other municipalities navigating the complex policy, operational, technical, organizational, and ethical standards that support privacy-protective open data programs.
Over half a century ago, Jane Jacobs sparked a revolution in urban planning with her 1961 book The Death and Life of Great American Cities, challenging the first wave of progressive urban renewal policies for failing to respect the needs and diversity of city-dwellers. The urban redevelopment projects against which Jacobs fought aspired to revitalize and modernize U.S. cities in the postwar era, but failed to produce concrete results.