Four Questions

How should arts and culture being recognized, in the discourse on cities of the future (smart or otherwise)? Why is it necessary to have a cultural perspective in the global smart city discourse?

In a world where cities are measured by abstract quantitative performance indicators, arts and culture offers a tangible qualitative understanding of the city. With technology ubiquitously embedded within global smart cities, it is the cultural perspective that enables a critical and nuanced appreciation of specific local context.

How should/can we talk about smart city and urban transformation beyond technology and infrastructure?

We need a new social contract for the smart city, particularly in the area of privacy, accessibility and trust building. What does it mean to live in a world without privacy? How do we bridge the gap between those that have and do not have access to technology? How do we build trust across social groups in a world where data can be manipulated?

What is the connection of arts and cultural practice and technology in (future) urban societies?

Technology will be deeply embedded within arts and cultural practices, particularly in the medium of communication, outreach and interactivity.

Please share your expert prediction or utopian view of the city of the future.

The city of the future will highly global and local simultaneously. Technological connectivity will remove geographical boundaries while also reducing the need for physical travel. It will accelerate the decentralisation of jobs, which in turns lead to a healthy growth of mid-sized second and third tier cities and reducing pressure on current mega cities.

On the social front, for a city that is fully embedded with technology, to be able to disconnect and revert to an analogue environment, will be a luxury. Dedicated resorts with digital dead zones will become prevalent for digital detox.