Citizen Engagement Strategy for Smart Cities

According to the Smart City Plan (SCP) of Smart Cities Mission, the process for planning the Smart City commences with the self assessment of the city, preparation of the city profile and thereafter progresses to intense citizen engagement at multiple levels in the city using different means. The SCP says, ‘a sound engagement strategy should involve better communication by government, soliciting feedback for problem identification, co-creating solutions and involving local citizen champions, while ensuring the active participation of various groups of people, such as youth and students associations, welfare associations, tax-payers associations, senior citizens, special interest groups, slum dwellers and others.’

While it is beyond argument that a sound citizen engagement can create an ownership of the plan among citizens and hence make implementation of the same easier, it is also true that citizen engagement if not done in an effective manner can only delay development and yield no productive results. Therefore, it is required that the right method of engagement be deployed at the right time to the right people to avail the full benefit of citizen engagement in any smart city. This within the very short time frame of Smart Cities Mission is a challenge for the city authorities. Hence, the activity of strategic planning and comprehensive citizen engagement is expected to be widely held beyond Smart City Mission in coming years. Foreseeing this, CIDCO Smart City Lab has developed a strategy for citizen engagement which can help city authorities guide the activity in their city.

The complete article can be found here in the newsletter.