Cities build new data solutions on existing infrastructure

Cities are perfect candidates for the benefits of the Internet of Things (IoT) because they need to mine new insights from disparate data and assets – from transit routes to building permit records to emergency management systems – and they generally don’t have the funds or the will to replace significant infrastructure. But as Kimberly Nelson wrote here last week, there’s no reason why cities should find IoT technologies out of reach, since IoT technologies are “rapidly emerging and easily within the grasp of all state and local governments.” On the Microsoft on Government blog today, Parul Bhandari, who is Government, Public Safety and National Security Big Data lead, explores how IoT helps cities streamline services, save money and create new experiences for citizens – all by connecting their existing data and services.

“Organizations—whether commercial enterprises, governments, or public agencies — are already using sensors and systems to monitor, manage and automate traffic control, HVAC, video surveillance, physical access and many other functions,” writes Bhandari. “These systems and ‘things’ are being connected to create an ‘Internet of Your Things’ that generates large amounts of potentially valuable data. Unlocking that value requires correlating and analyzing that data.” It all starts with understanding what matters most to a neighborhood, a city or a region, and building on what’s already in place. Check out the post on the Microsoft on Government blog.