Journal of Comparative Urban Law and Policy
Smart-city technology is being adopted in cities all around the world to simplify our lives, save us time, ease traffic, improve education, reduce energy usage, and keep us healthy and safe. Its adoption is necessary because of changes that are predicted for urban dwellers over the next three decades; urban population and travel are predicted to increase dramatically and our population is graying, meaning the population will include a much greater number of elderly citizens. As these changes occur, smart-city technology can have a huge impact on public safety, improving the ability of law enforcement to investigate crimes, both with increased speed and increased accuracy. Additionally, first responders can shave minutes off critical response times.
We must reach a balance between our goal of making our cities safer and our necessity to guard city-dwellers’ privacy. Policies governing smart-city privacy concerns need to be developed at the national level. Smart-city technology will make our lives simpler, our tasks faster, and our cities safer. As these improvements occur through greater network connectivity, city planners and legislators must be vigilant not to trade our privacy.
Leila Lawlor, Hardware, Heartware, or Nightmare: Smart-City Technology and the Concomitant Erosion of Privacy, 3 J. Compar. Urban L. & Pol'y 207 (2019).