Cities get Smarter in MIT Technology Review

The November/December issue 2014 of the journal MIT Technology Review was completely about the Smart City, with a business report titled 'Cities Get Smarter'. Besides case studies of several Smart City projects from different parts of the world (like Santander and Lagos) there is an extensive coverage of Amsterdam, where the focus is shifting from the smart city to smart citizens.

The issue gives attention to the Citizen Data Lab, that will be established as part of the Amsterdam Creative Industries Network. Among the persons who were interviewed is also our research director Frank Kresin on our experiment with the Smart Citizen Kit and Ger Baron, being the first Chief Technology Officer of the City of Amsterdam.

"Earlier this year the organization handed out 70 sensor kits capable of measuring aspects of air quality, including carbon and nitrogen dioxide concentrations, temperature, noise, light, and humidity. The original intent was to collect data that local health institutions could use. But that goal proved elusive. The inexpensive sensors, chosen for their adherence to open data standards, were not accurate enough to generate data for scientific use. Although the project did not satisfy its original mission, it provided plenty of valuable insight for future projects, says Frank Kresin, the Waag’s research director. Kresin says a bigger follow-up project in the works will invite several companies to contribute their sensors to an ecosystem measuring air-quality levels and possibly other metrics like ground movements. An organization will test for accuracy before the sensors are deployed."

Read more about this issue of the MIT Technology Review in this article: Citizen Technologists - Amsterdam wants its next data projects to be driven by citizens. The full issue can be downloaded against a fee of $20.