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The right to have digital rights in smart cities

Calzada, Igor ORCID: 2021. The right to have digital rights in smart cities. Sustainability 13 (20) , 11438. 10.3390/su132011438

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New data-driven technologies in global cities have yielded potential but also have intensified techno-political concerns. Consequently, in recent years, several declarations/manifestos have emerged across the world claiming to protect citizens’ digital rights. In 2018, Barcelona, Amsterdam, and NYC city councils formed the Cities’ Coalition for Digital Rights (CCDR), an international alliance of global People-Centered Smart Cities—currently encompassing 49 cities worldwide—to promote citizens’ digital rights on a global scale. People-centered smart cities programme is the strategic flagship programme by UN-Habitat that explicitly advocates the CCDR as an institutionally innovative and strategic city-network to attain policy experimentation and sustainable urban development. Against this backdrop and being inspired by the popular quote by Hannah Arendt on “the right to have rights”, this article aims to explore what “digital rights” may currently mean within a sample consisting of 13 CCDR global people-centered smart cities: Barcelona, Amsterdam, NYC, Long Beach, Toronto, Porto, London, Vienna, Milan, Los Angeles, Portland, San Antonio, and Glasgow. Particularly, this article examines the (i) understanding and the (ii) prioritisation of digital rights in 13 cities through a semi-structured questionnaire by gathering 13 CCDR city representatives/strategists’ responses. These preliminary findings reveal not only distinct strategies but also common policy patterns.

Item Type: Article
Date Type: Publication
Status: Published
Schools: Social Sciences (Includes Criminology and Education)
Wales Institute of Social & Economic Research, Data & Methods (WISERD)
Subjects: H Social Sciences > H Social Sciences (General)
H Social Sciences > HM Sociology
H Social Sciences > HT Communities. Classes. Races
J Political Science > JA Political science (General)
J Political Science > JC Political theory
J Political Science > JF Political institutions (General)
J Political Science > JK Political institutions (United States)
J Political Science > JN Political institutions (Europe)
J Political Science > JN Political institutions (Europe) > JN101 Great Britain
J Political Science > JN Political institutions (Europe) > JN1187 Scotland
J Political Science > JS Local government Municipal government
J Political Science > JZ International relations
T Technology > T Technology (General)
Additional Information: This article is an open access article distributed under the terms and conditions of the Creative Commons Attribution (CC BY) license ( s/by/4.0/).
Publisher: MDPI
ISSN: 2071-1050
Funders: Economic and Social Research Council (ESRC)
Related URLs:
Date of First Compliant Deposit: 16 October 2021
Date of Acceptance: 13 October 2021
Last Modified: 23 Nov 2022 17:49

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