Through the use of digital technologies and innovation, Cisco enables cities to become Smart+Connected Communities that help to improve its citizens’ quality of life. One particular urban locale that is helping to set a great example of this is right here in the United States. Kansas City, Missouri has created a Living Lab to promote citizen engagement and act on ways to implement digital transformation that will improve the city’s “Livability Index”.

At 319 square miles in size, Kansas City’s transformation will be far reaching. Central to the change is the city’s 93,000 street lights, which are being used as pillars to weave together a high bandwidth, low latency wireless sensor network that can move large amounts of data, while also providing Wi-Fi access to both citizens and public servants.

One way the City plans to turn these connections into solutions is through use of the Cisco Enterprise Mobility Services Platform (EMSP). This software platform helps unite infrastructure, mobile applications and cloud services to allow citizens to take ownership of decisions anywhere within their city to report issues, protect or revitalize their community.

Further, using context-aware data and location-based services, EMSP stimulates opportunities for local businesses to promote personalized offers to citizens in the immediate vicinity of their place of business. For example, on a sweltering summer’s day in Missouri, a refreshment vendor might promote a special offer on iced lemonade or frozen treats as prospective customers walk by their location. EMSP can also create more engaging experiences for those attending a Kansas City Royals baseball game or a downtown event.

Smart city possibilities are virtually endless, which is why the Living Lab is encouraging new ideas by combining Cisco expertise with industry, citizen and government leadership to build solutions together. Plans are already underway for better parking and traffic control, automated energy management, improved public safety, proactive infrastructure maintenance, theft prevention, and public transit accident avoidance among other ideas.

Learn more about smart cities, their innovations and the use of EMSP as one platform for three different constituents that produce unlimited benefits in my blog: Talking Trash: What is Your City’s Digital Transformation IQ?


Mala Anand

No Longer with Cisco