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Open Access Publications from the University of California

Benchmarking “Smart City” Technology Adoption in California: Developing and Piloting a Data Collection Approach

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In recent years, “smart city” technologies have emerged that allow cities, counties, and other agencies to manage their infrastructure assets more effectively, make their services more accessible to the public, and allow citizens to interface with new web- and mobile-based operators of alternative service providers. This project reviews the academic literature and other sources on potential strengths, weaknesses, and risks associated with smart city technologies. No dataset was found that measures the adoption of such technologies by government agencies. To address this gap, a methodology was developed to guide data collection on the adoption of smart city technologies by urban transportation agencies and other service providers in California. The strategy used involved webscraping; interviews with experts, public agency, and senior level staff; and consultations with technology vendors. The approach was tested by assembling data on the adoption of smart city technologies in California by municipalities and other local public agencies.

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