The project ended the year with a stakeholder workshop on the 7th December 2015. This was an opportunity to share our research with stakeholders and to get input from stakeholders on our research agenda for 2016. The workshop was well attended with representatives from the City, the Province and other partner organisations, and there was lively debate about the research presented as well as good ideas for future investigation.
After an update on the project progress for 2016, research was presented in two themes. The first session presented research around how a smart city contributes to quality of life. Two studies were presented, the first looking at how being digitally connected relates to quality of life and the second looking at how the use of apps benefits residents. These studies show that smart city services do contribute to quality of life.
In the second session three studies were presented looking at resident’s information needs and behaviour. The first study examined why people do or do not use smart city services that have been provided by the City. The second tested the e-skills of residents in city libraries to assess whether they are able to make use of digital services being provided. The third study presented an analysis of the types of people who use the City’s web site, analysing their information needs and how well the City’s web site meets them. These three studies all reflected on the unequal access that residents have to smart city services in Johannesburg and Gauteng.
The project team are grateful to stakeholders for their continued interest in and support of our research and look forward to future fruitful engagement.
Links to the presentations are provided here: