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From Smart Cities to a City of the Commons

"Smart City”. This buzzword promises "an energy-efficient, resource-conserving and low-emission city of the highest quality of life where latest energy technologies are applied". However, the optimism in this positive vision for the future is not shared by all. Is a sustainable lifestyle just a privilege for those who can afford it? And what does actually happen with the vast amount of personal data collected to keep these smart technologies operative? For Evgeny Morozov, we can also understand ”smart" as an acronym for "surveillance marketed as revolutionary technology”. In the end, the smartest city is the one that demands total control over the people living there. Francesca Bria and Duncan McLaren argue that we have to overcome visions of smart cities, where technical innovation is seen as the solution to all problems. Instead we must focus on new forms of social innovation, democratic co-determination and shared resources in order to raise the potential of cities for sustainable living. The truly smart cities are those who use new technologies to empower their citizens and rely on open source tools and open data.

This event was curated together with our partners 
Sonar+D from Barcelona as part of We are Europe

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