The evolution of networks will play a central role in the development of urban society. A network that delivers from A to Z on expectations with regards to coverage, capacity and capabilities is vital for turning urban populations into ‘cityzens’ of the Networked Society. I would argue that the urban network is the single most important piece of infrastructure needed for economic growth in a city. This is the first in a series of posts that will touch upon the following subjects introduced here.
Work & play
Lifestyles are transforming for locals and for tourists. Going forward, how do we thrill those visiting our cities, when location-based services and LTE are all widely available? How do we meet up with acquaintances in a city where fewer and fewer people plan social meetings in advance? The question is perhaps, what is required to power-up performance in public places in the city?
Similarly, urban business life and the service sector are in the beginning of a major innovation cycle. What role will networked collaboration play in re-inventing the service sector? How can the sales process in a city be revamped to support the evolution of small shops and food outlets? What will a modern restaurant look like if you spice up life beyond salt, pepper and free Wi-Fi? Will we work from office or home or will we see work developing around where we are?
Transportation & health
With cities becoming larger and larger, the focus is being placed on efficient transportation. How will air travel evolve and what about the door-to-door experience? How will parking and power infrastructures evolve to support a future centered on electric vehicles?
Finally, a major burden will be to take care of entire populations and secure their health. How can proactive activity-monitoring secure a more physically active population in the city? And how can we leverage the network to improve the situation for urban homeless people?
This subset of opportunities for cities in the Networked Society will be explored over the coming weeks, so stay tuned.