Smart City as a Mobile Technology: Critical Perspectives on Urban Development Policies

  • Patrizia LombardiEmail author
  • Alberto Vanolo
Part of the Public Administration and Information Technology book series (PAIT, volume 8)


This chapter aims at providing a critical reflection about the relation between smart city and neoliberal urban governance. In the current economic scenario of crisis and austerity, smart city policy is representing an attempt to attract and coopt private actors in the provision of urban services, opening new critical issues on urban neoliberalism and welfare. The hypothesis is that the smart city policy may be interpreted as a mobile technology (recalling Aihwa Ong’s definition) of governance circulating in cities across Europe. As a consequence of neoliberalism and economic crisis, local governments are more and more in charge of providing urban services, whereas the smart city paradigm is offering new areas of economic profitability for private companies promoting technological solutions. This process implies the development of new urban governance, where the smart city policy offers technological solutions, political responses and moral justifications that are socially and politically quite pervasive. According to this perspective, there is a great need for critical and global analysis, questioning the appropriateness of any smart city project in the context of its application.


European Union Mobile Technology Smart City Urban Policy Urban Service 
These keywords were added by machine and not by the authors. This process is experimental and the keywords may be updated as the learning algorithm improves.


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© Springer International Publishing Switzerland 2015

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Interuniversity Department of Regional & Urban Studies and PlanningPolitecnico di Torino and Università di TorinoTorinoItaly
  2. 2.Dipartimento CulturePolitica e Società, Università di Torino, Eu-Polis, Politecnico di TorinoTorinoItaly

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