It’s easy to bet big on smart cities. Abundant data and cheap automation helps urban cores to scale, and makes civic policy wiser. But this reliance on technology requires a healthy dose of systems thinking. Otherwise, the technology can bite back—often in surprising, unintended ways.
To make matters worse, it’s hard to experiment and explore possible solutions in living, breathing cities where citizens have to function. So experimentation is constrained. And if history tells us anything, it’s that city planners are so caught up in their current crises, they seldom look beyond the status quo.
There are ways to mitigate such risk, however. Drawing from lessons about the rise and fall of the automobile, Alistair Croll explains how paving the cowpaths, examining the models, and iterating everything can mitigate these risks.
Join Alistair to see what happens when dumb things happen to smart cities.
Alistair Croll is an author and entrepreneur who helps to accelerate startups, and works with some of the world’s biggest companies on business model innovation. In 2001, he cofounded Coradiant (acquired by BMC in 2011) and has since helped launch the Year One Labs accelerator; Bitcurrent; Rednod; CloudOps; and a variety of other startups. A sought-after speaker on data science, innovation, and technology ethics, Alistair has also launched and chaired some of the world’s leading conferences on emerging technology, including Startupfest, Strata, Cloud Connect, FWD50, Bitnorth, and Pandemon.io.
Alistair is the author of four books on technology and entrepreneurship, including the best-selling Lean Analytics, which has been translated into multiple languages and is in its fourteenth printing in China. A graduate of Dalhousie University, he is a visiting executive at Harvard Business School, where he teaches data science and critical thinking. Alistair tries to mitigate his chronic ADD by writing about far too many things at Solve For Interesting.
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