Handbook of Planning Support Science
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Handbook of Planning Support Science

Edited by Stan Geertman and John Stillwell

Encompassing a broad range of innovative studies on planning support science, this timely Handbook examines how the consequences of pressing societal challenges can be addressed using computer-based systems. Chapters explore the use of new streams of big and open data as well as data from traditional sources, offering significant critical insights into the field.
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Chapter 15: The influence of political context on smart governance initiatives in Glasgow, Utrecht and Curitiba

Zsuzsanna Tomor and Stan Geertman


With reference to the field of planning support science, our understanding of the influence of contextual factors on planning-orientated smart governance initiatives must be improved. An extensive literature review revealed that minimal attention has been paid to the influence of contextual factors. This lack of attention prompted the focus of this research, which empirically investigated the influence of the political context on smart city initiatives in Glasgow (Scotland, UK), Utrecht (Netherlands) and Curitiba (Brazil). In general, we conclude that political contextual factors play a role in influencing smart governance initiatives. Process-wise (roles of governments, non-state actors and technologies), the political context strongly shapes smart-governance initiatives. The research also revealed how unpredictable the role of citizens is in the light of the political context. Content-wise (societal outcomes), it is still unknown how these differences in contextual factors will lead to distinctive societal outcomes. For that, we will need a longer research timespan.

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