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Smart City: Florence, Italy Earns Prestigious Designation

Florence, Italy should be pretty pleased because it was just awarded the title of "Smart City.”

In an effort to be more transparent with its citizens, Florence shares the title of Smart City, given by the Milan-based communications technology fair, SMAU. The award, shared with Rome and Aquila, is given to cities that are making an effort to develop and implement forward-thinking ideas for residents and citizens of the region.

Rome has put into effect a smart-card (the Carta Roma) which offers discounts and financial services to its residents, while Florence has long been a forerunner in the data transparency movement, with the city's Open Data website, which is Italy's third largest producer of data.

The city's mayor, Matteo Renzi, released a statement offering, "The City of Florence has long worked to ‘open’ its data up to the public. We aim to be completely transparent and have all data verified online so it is clearly presented to the public. It is a ‘revolution’ that aims to change the rules of public administration in Italy and we need to invest more and more in this direction."

Along with its Open Data implementation, Florence also employs an Open Budget web program which presents a detailed breakdown of city spending.  And the feather in the cap of Florence? It is the only city in Italy to get a five star rating for quality and accessibility of information.

How do you feel about the accessibility of information for your city? Do you like the steps Florence has taken to become a Smart City? Let us know in the comment below!

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