Replicating low carbon smart cities through knowledge sharing and learning across cities: a new approach to urban governance?

Mazhar, M. ORCID: 0000-0003-2749-6408, 2018. Replicating low carbon smart cities through knowledge sharing and learning across cities: a new approach to urban governance? In: 2018 International Symposium on Governance and Innovation at Local Level, Sichuan University, Chengdu, China, 7-10 July 2018.

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Cities are complex urban conurbations and facing various challenges such as increasing urbanization, environmental issues and resource constraints. This makes radical urban innovation an imperative for local government in cities across the world. ‘Smart City’ has emerged as a new concept of urban governance and public administration. Smart city agenda has been gaining attention as a major response to the challenges cities are facing. The European Union (EU) Smart Cities agenda offers new horizons for innovation. EU has invested heavily in the 'Lighthouse Smart Cities', trying to pilot the next generation of low carbon solutions. However, EU does not have sufficient budget to fund all cities for piloting smart city innovation and is keen that cities should learn from Lighthouse Cities and replicate. Sharing knowledge and learning through best practice is paramount in a journey to replicating low carbon smart cities. This is because many projects die after the pilot stage and never scale up. A wide range of innovative initiatives are established in Europe and UK. Unfortunately, up till now, there is little or no cooperation between those initiatives. This is a unique opportunity for cities to share knowledge and use synergies between cross-border initiatives, which can be a new approach to urban governance.

Undoubtedly, there is growing need to explore how cities can leverage good practices and smart outcomes in a way that knowledge sharing and lessons learning can be effective to facilitate replication nationally and internationally. Currently, most of the smart city projects are in pilot phases, while academic studies investigating knowledge management and organisational learning perspective for smart cities are far more limited. Besides, most of the new thinking is emerging from practice and is lacking academic rigor suggesting a gap in this area of smart cities. This could be because smart city is mostly deployed as a technological concept and signifies increasing use of digital technologies in designing and delivering products and services in cities.

This research aims to explore how can cities share knowledge and learn from each other to facilitate replication of low carbon smart cities? It will explore barriers to knowledge sharing and learning across cities. A framework for replicating low carbon smart cities will be developed for local authorities providing guidelines to cities. The first stage of this research is to conduct comprehensive literature review on low carbon smart cities, knowledge management and organisational learning to develop theoretical underpinning. Based on this, a theoretical model will be developed for conducting empirical research. This research will use mixed-method approach. Qualitative data will be collected with the help of 15-20 semi-structured interviews with managers involved in EU/UK Lighthouse and Follower cities’. Quantitative data will be collected through an online questionnaire and potential respondents will be the individuals involved in smart city projects. Based on the findings, a replication framework will be developed and feedback will be gained from the participants and members of the EU Smart City Network. This study can be useful for local government responsible for implementing smart city innovation.

Item Type: Conference contribution
Description: This was an abstract submission and then presentation.
Creators: Mazhar, M.
Date: July 2018
Divisions: Schools > Nottingham Business School
Record created by: Jonathan Gallacher
Date Added: 29 Nov 2019 09:21
Last Modified: 29 Nov 2019 09:21

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