technology meeting (Sergey Nivens/


How cities can keep up with cascading tech advances

What: “The Cascading Technology Trap: Implications in Smart City Deployments: Learnings from the Field,” a report by Wavefront Smart Cities and Xona Partners

Why: Connectivity and data management solutions are evolving so rapidly that cities cannot take advantage of them.

Findings: Cities have taken a few different approaches to dealing with this cascading technology issue:

Partner with startups, which can solve smart city problems faster and less expensively than industry leaders, in addition to supporting tech-based economic development, the report suggested.

Include internet and cloud providers in smart city design to tap into vendors' expertise and ensure the latest technologies are deployed.

Involve high-end talent to get new technologies implemented, possibly by sharing resources across cities.

Create a consortium model, including telecom companies, universities and other partners, to help generate ideas based on best practices and reduce risk. Although decision making and governance can be problematic under this model, it can create additional synergies between the players in the smart city ecosystem.

Read the full report here.

About the Author

Matt Leonard is a reporter/producer at GCN.

Before joining GCN, Leonard worked as a local reporter for The Smithfield Times in southeastern Virginia. In his time there he wrote about town council meetings, local crime and what to do if a beaver dam floods your back yard. Over the last few years, he has spent time at The Commonwealth Times, The Denver Post and WTVR-CBS 6. He is a graduate of Virginia Commonwealth University, where he received the faculty award for print and online journalism.

Leonard can be contacted at or follow him on Twitter @Matt_Lnrd.

Click here for previous articles by Leonard.

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