1st Edition

Building Smart Cities Analytics, ICT, and Design Thinking

By Carol L. Stimmel Copyright 2016
    292 Pages 47 B/W Illustrations
    by Auerbach Publications

    290 Pages 47 B/W Illustrations
    by Auerbach Publications

    The term "smart city" defines the new urban environment, one that is designed for performance through information and communication technologies. Given that the majority of people across the world will live in urban environments within the next few decades, it's not surprising that massive effort and investment is being placed into efforts to develop strategies and plans for achieving "smart" urban growth. Building Smart Cities: Analytics, ICT, and Design Thinking explains the technology and a methodology known as design thinking for building smart cities.

    Information and communications technologies form the backbone of smart cities. A comprehensive and robust data analytics program enables the right choices to be made in building these cities. Design thinking helps to create smart cities that are both livable and able to evolve. This book examines all of these components in the context of smart city development and shows how to use them in an integrated manner.

    Using the principles of design thinking to reframe the problems of the smart city and capture the real needs of people living in a highly efficient urban environment, the book helps city planners and technologists through the following:

    • Presentation of the relevant technologies required for coordinated, efficient cities
    • Exploration of the latent needs of community stakeholders in a culturally appropriate context
    • Discussion of the tested approaches to ideation, design, prototyping, and building or retrofitting smart cities
    • Proposal of a model for a viable smart city project

    The smart city vision that we can create an optimized society through technology is hypothetical at best and reflects the failed repetition through the ages of equating scientific progress with positive social change. Up until now, despite our best hopes and efforts, technology has yet to bring an end to scarcity or suffering. Technical innovation, instead, can and should be directed in the service of our shared cultural values, especially within the rapidly growing urban milieu.

    In Building Smart Cities: Analytics, ICT, and Design Thinking, the author discusses the need to focus on creating human-centered approaches to our cities that integrate our human needs and technology to meet our economic, environmental, and existential needs. The book shows how this approach can lead to innovative, livable urban environments that are realizable, practical, and economically and environmentally sustainable.


    The Imperative for Smart Cities
    A New Vision
    What Is Smart?
    A Sensitive Relationship
    What Do We Really Want from the Smart City?
    Managing the Shift
    Designing for People

    Technology, Innovation, and the Problem with People
    Chapter Goal
    Are We Really Ready for Technology Advancement?
    People and Technology: Collision or Cooperation?
    Sensors to Services
    The Surprisingly Familiar Sensor
    The Internet of Things

    A New Perspective on Smart Cities
    Chapter Goal
    The Position for Moving Forward
    What’s the Holdup?
    Smart City Design Goals
    A Usable World

    Why Design Thinking?
    Chapter Goal
    Thinking About Thinking
    So, What About Merging?

    Design Thinking Applied
    Chapter Goal
    A Method, Not Magic
    Ways That Design Thinking Has Been Used in Cities
    When Urban Design Rises Above Imposition
    Assessing the Usefulness of Design Thinking

    Section One: Key Points


    Smart City Planning and Management
    Chapter Goal
    Smart Cities and Their Role in the Creation of a National Identity
    A New Role for City Government
    Balancing the Forces
    The Politics of Artifacts

    The Fundamentals of Smart Infrastructure
    Chapter Goal
    The Energy Opportunity
    The Building Opportunity
    Orchestrating Our Lives, Not Just Our Buildings
    The Bonds of Energy and Water
    Full Convergence

    The Urban Life Force
    Chapter Goal
    Transportation as Animating Principle
    Innovative Transportation Services
    Transportation Connects
    Where Do We Go Now?

    Section Two: Key Points


    Smart City Analytics
    Chapter Goal
    The Vocabulary of Analytics
    Analytical Models
    The Analytics of Things
    The Analytical Intersection of Human and Machine
    Analytics as a Service

    Technology, Social Inclusion, and the Wisdom of the Urban Community
    Chapter Goal
    Technology in Social Inclusion
    People as Sensors
    From Social Inclusion to Social Influence
    Crowdsourcing for a Smarter City

    Information Security and Privacy
    Chapter Goal
    Drawing the Lines
    Security Deserves an Important Place in Design
    Privacy Begins in the Home
    The Role of Open Data in the Privacy Discussion
    Putting This into Practice

    Section Three: Key Points


    Hacking the City
    Chapter Goal
    Designing Inspiration
    Sociospatial Perspectives

    Smart Cities: Problem or Promise?
    Chapter Goal
    Forging a Partnership
    Create an Ecosystem
    Crossing the Chasm of Fear
    How Design Thinking Can Work for the Smart City
    So, You Want to Design a Smarter City?

    Section Four: Key Points


    Carol L. Stimmel is the founder and CEO of Manifest Mind, a collaborative research and consulting organization, working to ensure that companies and investors have the information they need to make enduring investment decisions in the complex world of sustainability. Stimmel is recognized for her integrity, years of experience, independent spirit, and ability to create expert teams on-demand, which have rapidly made Manifest Mind a trusted source of insight for assessing opportunities in developing human economies, the built environment, and natural ecosystems.

    With 25 years of experience in emerging technology markets, including operations, research and analysis, and product design, she is a frequent speaker and co-author of The Manager Pool (2001), author of Big Data Analytics Strategies for the Smart Grid (2014), and Building Smart Cities: Analytics, ICT, and Design Thinking (2015). Currently, she is working on new approaches in the field of sustainable finance and future tech collaboration. Stimmel holds several key technology patents and pending applications with myriad co-inventors, including those related to virtual communication, broadcasting, autonomic computing, and energy benchmarking.

    "Carol Stimmel has set out to carry forward many of the lessons in early smart cities efforts. She lays out her thinking in a rigorous and methodical manner that serves to teach the reader design-thinking principles for solving challenging complex smarter cities problems. She also provides an innovative framework within which to consider appropriate solutions. But, perhaps the most compelling thing about this book is the demonstration of the fact that the vision for human-centric smart cities is entirely achievable and wholesomely probable – this is not some idyllic future, this is a reality that we are quickly coming to face and for which we have tools to address."
    — From the Book’s Foreword by Sherry Comes, IBM Distinguished Engineer & CTO/Entrepreneur

    "Ms. Stimmel lays out the problems associated with the current trajectory of the development of smart cities concisely and provides a cogent argument for how applying design thinking to this domain will improve the likelihood of enabling people in urban environments ‘to be productive, socially connected, and economically successful.’ She argues that we must put design and human experience before technical capabilities, and that we must view the enterprise of building smart cities holistically and within specific cultural contexts. Engineers, user experience professionals, and students who are new to either the topic of smart cities, to the practices of design thinking, or experience design will benefit greatly from reading this book."
    — Anne P. McClard, PhD, UX Research and Design Lead, Intel Corporation

    "Carol Stimmel has penned a book not just to be read by city planners, engineers, or technology experts. This narrative is for all of us — the artist, a student, the farmer, a banker. ‘Using design thinking, a human-centered approach to innovation, urban designers can create new products and processes that are well grounded in empathy.’ These are weighted words of truth as we move forward, seeking balance in an often unbalanced world, Ms. Stimmel's voice resonates in deeply human prose and debate, relevant to our humanity today, the past and most succinctly, our collective future."
    —John Stanmeyer, American photojournalist, National Geographic

    "The Internet of Things is the Wild West of new technology trends. While it is currently peaking on the technology hype curve, its impact on the future technology landscape is irrefutable. With every tech startup company (and even massive incumbents) trying to redefine the IoT in their own image, Ms. Stimmel brings us back to earth with the tried and true design approach that defines the problems in human terms before presuming the solutions.

    With the rise of each new culture twisting technology most early pioneers imagine the bright future through lenses shaped in the past. Ms. Stimmel’s approach helps avoid such mistakes by taking a fresh look at how people are affected and how lives can be improved when technologists are armed with new tools. This book should be required reading for politicians, sociologists, urban geographers, and technologists who intend to build the cities of the future."
    — Clarke Stevens, Principle IoT Architect, CableLabs

    "Finally, someone breaks the myth about the perfect value of ubiquitous Big Data. Ms. Stimmel purports that Big Data with little wisdom is a dangerous combination and that, if we do not disrupt it with the collective voice and spirt of human city dwellers, we will continue to run the perilous risk of inequality, injustice, and a compromised quality of life, affecting mostly those who are socially and economically disenfranchised. With lucidity, grace, and compassion, and an arsenal of Big Data behind her, Carol Stimmel firmly and unequivocally argues that human beings need to be an integral part of the design and development of their cities, and that cities should belong to the people and be governed by the people, not by machines and algorithms."
    — Jude Smith Rachele, PhD, Co-Founder and CEO of Abundant Sun

    "This is a critically important book. Carol Stimmel takes the viewpoint that our technology and device centric approach to building smart cities of the future will need to give way to a human-centric approach if we are going to build metropolises in which the 50% of the world's population that lives in urban areas can thrive. She accomplishes this by asking the right questions, especially how can we build cities that work for people? She provides practical approaches to developing these solutions."
    — Nicole Poindexter, Founder and CEO, Energicity