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Towards a Socially Responsible Smart City: Tools for Smarter Community Service


As a city becomes smarter, the integrated networks of engineered cyber and physical elements provide the capability to greatly improve the quality of life of its citizens. In order to leverage these capabilities to benefit all classes of society, we propose a framework, called SOCIUS, that balances the supply and demand of available resources while maximizing the social welfare of people-in-need by utilizing cyber-physical infrastructure in smart cities. As a first step, we show through numerical simulations that our proposed framework can reduce the amount of resources wasted by 25% through intelligently assigning the location of services and dynamically pairing resources to different homeless populations. Additionally as part SOCIUS, we introduce an open-source software package called CHOMS (City HOMelessness Simulator). This simulator allows users to create populations of simulated homed and homeless individuals who roam and interact in a city environment. We verified the behavior of our simulated individuals experiencing homelessness using data gathered from real-world user studies. As a case study, we compared the performance of our resource distribution algorithm in the simulator and found similar results as in our initial step.

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