P26 Smart services in smart cities: a public management perspective

Panel Chairs:
Mila Gasco-Hernandez, Theresa A. Pardo and J. Ramon Gil-Garcia

Corresponding Chair:
Mila Gasco-Hernandez, mgasco@ctg.albany.edu

Over the past few decades, challenges faced by cities have become increasingly complex and interrelated as a result of rapid urbanization processes and population growth as well as the need to compete with other cities to attract human capital, tourists, and economic investments. In the face of these issues, city governments have been increasingly pressured to become more innovative in how they deliver public services, improve the urban environment, and become more competitive. Current literature echoes the need to innovate by, among other strategies, building the capacity of local governments to perform their routine activities and, simultaneously, innovate.

Increasingly local governments are adopting information and communication technologies and other disruptive technologies to support different policies and services to enhance the well-being of individuals and make their cities more attractive. In particular, local governments are embracing the concept of smart services as services that use emerging technologies together with internal and external collaborations, to improve the effectiveness, efficiency, and legitimacy of services in smart cities.

The phenomena of smart services and smart cities has been studied by numerous academic disciplines including increased recent attention from public management scholars. However, sound conceptual and empirical analyses of smart services and cities from a public management perspective are still scarce. In addition, the limited public management literature on smart cities has focused mainly on governance issues addressing topics such as networked governance, actors, collaboration, co-creation and co-production, policy networks, public-private partnerships, leadership, and urban policy making. This literature has only begun to address other core public management concepts such as implementation capacity, performance, public value, strategic planning, change management, human resources, and smart city branding/marketing. However, with the complexity of the urbanization process and increasing investments in making cities smarter, there is a need for a deeper understanding of the management and governance practices that cities are adopting to underpin the development of smart services and to govern smart cities.

This panel welcomes both theoretical and empirical papers that contribute to the growing discussion on smart services in smart cities from a public management perspective. Areas of focus and interest for this panel include, but are not limited to, the following topics: smart governance as the foundation to creating smart cities (elements, prerequisites, and principles of smart governance), smart government (focal areas, current practices, cases, and potential pitfalls), smart partnerships (triple/quadruple helix, public-private partnerships, and citizen participation), smart cities and regions (cases, rankings, comparisons, and critical success factors), management of smart cities, smart services, local government organizational capacity to build smart cities, and smart city branding.