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The Connective: Laying the Groundwork for Measuring Phoenix Equity & Quality of Life

On any given day, Brian Dean could be on the phone with an Alphabet Inc. company learning more about the Google giant’s foray into urban innovation, or arguing the merits of wifi-enabled lamp posts for Phoenix streets. At first mention, the street lamps might sound extravagant. But as Brian articulates, this is all about equity and access.

“Light poles are probably the most valuable assets when it comes to a smart city,” he explains. “You use them to hide the beacon and sensors… and if we’d had them in place en masse before Covid hit, they likely could have helped lessen the impact of the digital divide.”

So what’s stopping us from implementing changes that could have a transformative social impact? For one, agreed-upon standards for establishing our baselines as a Region. As Brian puts it, “You can’t improve what you can’t measure.”

That’s exactly the challenge that The Connective is setting out to tackle over the coming months in partnership with ASU and the British Standards Institute: taking our smart region goals like “driving equity,” “resiliency” and “improving quality of life,” and determining which tangible indicators we will use to put Greater Phoenix to the test.

Want to know more? Contact Brian Dean or read up on the issues:

Read More

🌐 Social Justice, Broadband Top Priorities for Smart Cities

💡 Lighting the road to smart cities and sustainability

📏 Measuring the Smart City

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