Smart Cities in Colombia : A Latin-America example about Governance

So much literature has been said about smart cities since the world knew the figure by which 50% of the planet has lived in urban areas since 2007. In a country like Colombia, the urbanization rate is more than 75%. In Canada, the second largest country in the world is 88%. It is usually in cities where creativity converges and develops.

This time I want to explain how new models can create what cities in Colombia really need: styles of coexistence. I think it is more pertinent to focus on how solutions can be generated that are adapted to the culture, consumption habits, civic level, economic and political structure of cities in Colombia.

Cities are places where the economy is growing and some cities are having more power than some states in the world. Michael Batty, an expert in urban planning and one of the first “Button-up urban planning” in the world says the world has several urban planning models, but many of them are focused on vehicle management. A city in general is occupied by buildings of all kinds in 70% of the space (cadastre), to this is added the public space and the road network, leaving at the end the species and biodiversity, marginally.
Traditional urban planning is obsolete and does not respond to the current needs of coexistence, lifestyle changes, species protection, new trading habits, new working modalities and mobility. The cities developed in a model called “top-down” which a group of individuals decides by the millions, and simulates with archaic tools, what people “want” or “need”.

Many countries in the world, the information that allows an effective decision system in the area of ​​urban planning, is very limited. Generally, the databases are not clean, nor properly collected and are not in the right places. Their use and transparency are not the best, as their access is denied. The world today has 6 billion parcels, and of these only 1.5 billion are registered. Moreover, the records do not count identification by sex, race, age and other demographic criteria.

The change is in the nature of how it is governed, the charges within a city hall, the way it communicates with the neighborhoods, the voting systems and the codes that govern the channel between citizens and rulers, make part of the “Infrastructure”, is also being transformed with a new technological mix.

Many of the multinationals offer closed systems in which privacy is not important, even if it is said that there are systems of encryption and protection of personal data, if so, Yahoo would not have lost a billion accounts for infiltration. All current computer systems are vulnerable. The appearance of Blockchain, “I am an active member of Blockchain and Artificial Intelligence in Canada & USA, one of the most advanced in the world” opens the door to a very interesting way to manage assets such as personal data and make government.

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At the end of 2017, in the United States and Dubai will be tested the taxi that flies, by several Start-Ups. Such innovations radically change the way a city is designed, but more important is the power relationship that has been established for decades between an administration and its population. With companies such as Uber, AirBnB, Amazon and others the way it is consumed, radically changes the operation and operations of urban infrastructure.
It is difficult to implement innovation in a country where the metastasis of corruption reaches a point where royalties are political commissions, procurement processes are tailored to companies that provide commissions at all levels of government.

Smart Governance is changing the way people are elected, how they make urban planning and how they act for procurement

Cities in Colombia can implement infrastructure as long as the contracting systems are modified. The control agencies do not allow the very high rates of impunity in investigations to those who, from a government (State, regional or local), take the so-called “common” resources that come from taxes for fraudulent and sinister assemblies. It is not possible that scams of trillions of dollars, that is to say that each citizen in Colombia is stolen in taxes is finished in house by jail. At the same time the digitization, improves the tax collection at the level of the citizen, who also evades many taxes or paperwork.

The city of today is a platform and is the first base of a process of peace and coexistence. A City is not just a set of concrete mega-projects, because although, in urban planning, there is a lack of consensus and better decision-making tools between the city’s operations and its residents.

The digitization of cities is a fact, despite the risks in physical security (aggression or crimes) or digital (hacking or virtual theft), that transformation comes for three reasons: The city’s work teams can be more efficient, The quality of urban services can be of better quality and fiscal optimization can generate a better distribution of resources. The data must be shared and through the example the culture can be modified.

Digitization can also bring more transparency to tax collection (taxes and / or donations) with better social assistance. Involving populations, crime can also be reduced because

Founder & CEO at CityZeen Inc. I am immigrant, a nomad, always learning, building, co-creating.