From Research to Practice
Edited by Nicola F. Dotti
Chapter 15: Smart cities, towards smart governance?
‘Smartness’ has become a trendy attribute of a growing number of policies, agendas and phenomena, implying a particular set of qualities and characteristics, or way of doing things. Despite its ubiquity, the term is not, in itself, very clear, stretching from technology-centred managerial efficiency agendas to a focus on cognitive learning processes in policymaking. Yet this terminological fuzziness is also its attraction, because it suggests innovativeness, creativity, novelty, and all those ‘things’ that policymakers like to be associated with. This chapter explores elements of ‘smartness’ in the framing and implementation of city-regional governance. Does ‘smartness’ relate to particular, novel and imaginative ways of doing or organising things? Is it about conflict resolution between competing policy agendas and ‘cultures’, geographic imaginations and practices? Or, alternatively, is it about ‘learning’ as a way of optimising agendas and practices?
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