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Sustainability data's versatile potential: Where does data fit in the quest for sustainable cities?

from Government Technology

Improving sustainability is one of the core promises of the smart city revolution. Cities and vendors alike have heralded optimization as an environmental panacea: By using data to make everything from transportation to service delivery faster and more efficient, cities can ensure more responsible use of energy.

Optimizing existing systems, however, is only one way of realizing sustainability in data-driven cities. Better and more widely accessible environmental data is also a tool for inspiring change, both from the top down and the bottom up. For one, better data allows governments to better understand environmental challenges and address them at their focal points. And, accessible data can galvanize residents to take action — as both citizens and consumers — to improve their cities' environment. more

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