Delivering Public Service for the Future. Tomorrow s City Hall: Catalysing the digital economy

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1 Delivering Public Service for the Future Tomorrow s City Hall: Catalysing the digital economy

2 2 Cities that have succeeded over the centuries are those that changed and adapted as economies have evolved.

3 New York and Toronto, for example, have travelled a considerable distance from their fur-trading past as New Amsterdam and York. Cities that fail to negotiate this evolution often end up on the wane. Today, it is digital and big data that are shaping how cities evolve, and helping City Hall to deliver public service for the future. Urban economies have traditionally relied on a city s prowess as a hub for the physical trade of goods. These range from settlements that profited from their ports to market towns that gained from their legal right to host markets. Today, in the digital age, we need to add data into that mix. Data is re-inventing how economies function and how people live and work. The data captured by City Hall is a resource and an asset. In particular, it is an exciting opportunity for cities to better serve citizens and also support new job creation. Smart cities can use data, in collaboration with the private sector, to improve their services and fuel the local entrepreneurial environment. Digitalisation also delivers growth: a study from Accenture and Oxford Economics shows a statistically significant correlation between countries GDP and the degree to which they embrace digital. Each 10-point increase in digitalisation equates to a one percent increase in GDP. To achieve that ambition, cities will need to evolve from purely physical hubs. They will also need to be digital hubs pro-actively nurturing their digital economies, releasing their data for others to use, while also encouraging private actors to do the same; and creating an urban information marketplace. In short, City Hall can act as an information broker. In this marketplace ecosystem, city authorities, experts and the private sector collaborate and co-create, using data in innovative ways to tackle cities major challenges and transform service provision, improve the lives of citizens and strive to do more with less. 3

4 Three avenues for the smart city NEW YORK In order to deliver this data-driven future, three key steps will be needed. 1 Invest in digital and data leadership Urban bureaucracies, dating back many years, have entrenched institutional preferences and substantial legacy infrastructure. The scale of change required, therefore, requires top-down leadership. Cities such as Chicago and San Francisco have appointed Chief Data Officers, who employ smart technologies to transform the way that cities operate. Smart cities match supply and demand more effectively, providing services that predict demand rather than just reacting to it. New York s City Hall has recently pioneered the role of Chief Analytics Officer (CAO), to find and use data from across the city s government to better inform how front-line workers operate. The city s first CAO, Mike Flowers, explains that: being data-driven is not primarily a challenge of technology; it is a challenge of direction and organisational leadership. City leadership will need to map out the skills they require to deliver their digital transformation, plugging the skills gap and putting in place the right governance arrangements to ensure leaders have the mandate to be effective. CHICAGO 4 CDO

5 NEW YORK 2 Break down internal data silos Smart cities generate vast amounts of data. Unfortunately, most of it is only used for a department s narrow purpose. New York provides an example of a more integrated approach. Its DataBridge project was initiated to integrate and share information. It involves over 20 city departments, contributing information to a common database that all can access and works by adopting a common standard for sending and receiving information to the central repository. Combining data in new ways can have a profound influence on the ability of the city authority to serve its citizens. After Hurricane Sandy hit New York in 2012, for example, the authorities realised that they had no publically held map that listed all of the city s businesses. It was therefore very difficult to determine which ones were likely to need flood assistance. DataBridge helped City Hall to combine information from six different databases, giving a much more nuanced picture of where efforts were needed. Leaders at City Hall need to examine their data governance framework, considering the need for approaches such as Centres of Excellence, which span different departments and cross traditional organisational barriers. Being data-driven is not primarily a challenge of technology; it is a challenge of direction and organisational leadership. Mike Flowers, New York s first Chief Analytics Officer NEW YORK 5

6 BOSTON SINGAPORE 3 Liberate data through new partnerships and collaborations Smart cities need to explore new kinds of partnership with the private sector and academia to liberate and drive value from data. Open data is a significant opportunity. Providing searchable data sets encourages collaboration to solve urban problems. In Boston, for example, City Hall s Office of New Urban Mechanics (MONUM) helps build connections between entrepreneurs and government and acts as a front door for innovators. In particular, it has become adept at rolling out rapid, inexpensive pilots to help develop solutions, often based on shared data. The city s Street Bump app, for example, uses sensors within citizens mobile phones to detect unevenness of the road surface as people drive around town; mapping it against road locations and helping to detect issues such as pot holes; this can speed up maintenance decisions and improve spending. Not only do the public provide the data in this partnership, but the core algorithm was crowd sourced by the city, with an insurance company providing a prize for the best solution. In November 2014, city-state Singapore launched its SmartNation strategy, with Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong stating: We are a leading city today but other leading cities like San Francisco, New York, London, Sydney, Shanghai, they are attracting capital, talent, ideas. They are building outstanding urban environments. We have to move ahead with them and stay up there amongst the leading cities of the world. As part of this transformation, Singapore is looking to drive significant change across government and society. A Smart Nation Program Office will ensure a whole-government approach, with departments collaborating and driving towards a common goal. City Hall will also roll out more than 1,000 sensors; improve cyber security; and seek to foster digital skills. Smart city innovations are now being driven in areas like transport data. Not only does City Hall provide its own transport app for residents, transport officials have also put substantial data sets online and invited the community to use them in innovative applications. Other cities are doing the same. London s open data has helped propel the CityMapper app, for example, to be adopted by nearly half of the city s smartphone users. Delivering this sort of fertile environment will mean changing procurement rules that could otherwise constrain innovation; ensuring the right regulatory framework is in place; and making smart investments in technology infrastructure. 6

7 Looking ahead: a bright future for the smart city? Cities and their citizens are shaped by the forces of innovation and technology. And today, it is digital technologies that are shaping our urban way of life. In an increasingly urban world, digital technologies and big data will be critical for creating tomorrow s citizen-centric City Hall. Just like the majority of citizens that reside in our smart cities have taken enthusiastically to the benefits that technology affords them in their everyday lives, the time is ripe for city leaders to move with the times and embrace the digital age. To remain relevant to their constituents evolving needs, City Hall needs to operate as an information broker: catalysing their local digital economies and delivering public service for the future. 7

8 Contact Us Jen Hawes-Hewitt Global Cities Management Consulting Lead Simon Giles Global Cities Lead Connect with us to learn more on delivering public service for the future. Follow us on and LinkedIn. About Accenture s Global Cities Team Accenture s Global Cities team works with city leaders to improve the delivery of citizen services through digital transformation. The team works with more than 50 cities around the world, helping them to reduce operational costs, improve inter-agency collaboration, and promote innovation and entrepreneurship enabling cities to deliver public service for the future. About Delivering Public Service for the Future What does it take to deliver public service for the future? Public service leaders must embrace four structural shifts advancing toward personalized services, insight-driven operations, a public entrepreneurship mindset and a cross-agency commitment to mission productivity. By making these shifts, leaders can support flourishing societies, safe, secure nations and economic vitality for citizens in a digital world delivering public service for the future. About Accenture Accenture is a leading global professional services company, providing a broad range of services and solutions in strategy, consulting, digital, technology and operations. Combining unmatched experience and specialized skills across more than 40 industries and all business functions underpinned by the world s largest delivery network Accenture works at the intersection of business and technology to help clients improve their performance and create sustainable value for their stakeholders. With approximately 373,000 people serving clients in more than 120 countries, Accenture drives innovation to improve the way the world works and lives. Visit us at Copyright 2016 Accenture All rights reserved. Accenture, its logo, and High Performance Delivered are trademarks of Accenture

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