Can technology solve cities? During economic booms, we tend to apply the philosophy of the zeitgeist too broadly. But what’s good for the goose isn’t necessarily good for the gander.
The intersection of cities and technology is a perfect example. While well-applied technology and data analysis can vastly improve cities’ livability, relying on those tools to create a healthy, vibrant city is crazy. The tech sector’s focus on data collection and analysis locks them into a narrow definition of successful governance that focuses on the tactics of service provision while ignoring the bigger picture of community health. That messier, human side requires understanding a place’s values and personality, helping residents cope with change, and providing the infrastructure that supports the social fabric.