Smart City Ethics: The Challenge to Democratic Governance in the Oxford Handbook of Ethics of AI (edited by Markus D. Dubber, Frank Pasquale, and Sunit Das)
19 Pages Posted: 7 Jun 2019 Last revised: 30 Jul 2020
Date Written: July 2020
Smart city initiatives rely on pervasive data gathering and integration, big data analytics, and artificial intelligence to manage mobility, energy, housing, public realm access, and myriad public and private services. These data flows can change how physical infrastructure like streets and parks are configured and services provisioned. They can tailor opportunities for housing or education based on individual digital identities and predictive algorithms. As more life in the city runs through digital apps and platforms, rights to access and control data increase in importance. Data flows from residents and public spaces to smart city corporations raise pressing policy questions about what power the public should cede to private developers to shape urban space, subject to how much oversight, and with what expectation of return on public assets. This chapter sorts these concerns into three major groups: privatization, platformization, and domination.
Keywords: smart city, surveillance, data, platforms, communications, networks, Internet, neoliberalism, city government, municipal government, localism, procurement, privatization, privacy
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