Have you read part 1 of the series? Find it here
What about the part 2? Find it here
I would like to give some other examples that I came across. First, let’s put our famous introduction table:
IBM researchers, together with the city of Lyon, France, built a system that helps traffic operators reduce congestion on the road. It is called “Decision Support System Optimizer (DSSO)”.
If an operator sees that a traffic jam is likely to occur, then, she/he can adjust traffic signals accordingly to keep the flow of cars moving smoothly. So yes, it works real time, which means it can be used for ambulances or firefighters, which means it can save lives!
The algorithms in the system learns from its most successful recommendations, then apply that knowledge for future predictions.
2) Public Safety:
Here is another good usage of public data: Homicide Watch D.C. aims to cover every murder in the District of Columbia. It’s sorted by “suspect” and “victim” profiles, where it breaks down each person’s name, age, gender and race, as well as original articles reported by Homicide Watch staff. It is community driven.
It has an interactive map feature where each violent crime with D.C. is pinned as red, and if you click on one of the red icons, you’re transferred to the respective victim’s profile page.
AIDSVu is an interactive map that illustrates the prevalence of HIV in the United States. The data is transferred from US Center of Disease Control, which are collected at state and country level each year.
This site breaks down the HIV prevalence rates by race and it estimates percentages of people living with HIV in certain areas, making it easy to find testing sites close to home. Users can view the full country map or they can search for individual cities; each are color-coded by number of HIV-diagnosed adults per 100,000, as seen in the screenshot above.
4) Citizen Platform:
Citizensconnect, a great example of “participatory urbanism”, is a mobile application that enable Boston residents to quickly report public works, infrastructure and service problems, such as potholes, streetlight failures, or graffiti via their phones, allowing the city to be more responsive to its citizens’ needs and eliminating paperwork. Once public workers finish their projects, they record the date and time of completion, which allows Bostonians to verify the city’s responsiveness to their requests.
What does this app serve to? Well, it allows citizens to easily tailor government resources to their needs in a convenient way. It also increases the accessibility to the government, allowing city residents to actively engage their government for assistance rather than being reduced to passively waiting for services materialize. Hence, it improves the value of government services by encouraging citizen-produced input.
5) Another example for healthcare:
Foodborne Chicago is one of my favorites. It is a website that connects people who complain about food poisoning on Twitter to the Chicago Department of Public Health (CDPH).
The CDPH Food Protection Services gets 5800 complaints per year, leading to 174 restaurant investigations for suspected food poisoning. However, approximately 45% of illness related to food goes unreported according to CDPH.
When a resident makes complaint about a restaurant, the City passes it on to the CDPH Food Protection Services follows up with the resident. Then an inspection team is dispatched to the restaurant in question, if required.
Once the form above is completed, the City of Chicago takes it from there. They use the City’s Open311 system to directly submit the complainer’s information.
This website is a typical example of how a government can increase its efficiency when serving citizens by ensuring their healthiness.
We all know the famous “governments function slow” saying, which holds every different parts of the world, but why not change it with tech?