Thursday, 4 June 2015

Cape Town as a leading Digital City - reinventing the wheel?

I received an invite to a workshop the other day that stated that
“The City of Cape Town’s leadership believes that technology can be a powerful tool in changing the ways in which information is accessed, services are delivered, and citizens engage with government. The Executive Mayor, Patricia de Lille, is committed to making the City of Cape Town the first truly digital city in our region and the leading digital city in the African continent.”
It went on to say that
“A Digital City Work Group has recently been established … in the City of Cape Town. One of the first deliverables of this group is the development of a Digital City Strategy and an Agenda for delivery….. On .… we are having a workshop to kick off the development of this policy. The workshop will be facilitated by McKinsey.”
I did accept the invite to attend the workshop. Later in the day I received an email from someone who had worked with me previously and is still involved in the City of Cape Town regarding this invite. This person was essentially saying that the city was reinventing the wheel and that Mckinsey was hijacking an already existing agenda. The mail stated that
“I had a discussion with <a very senior city person> a few weeks ago and he had no idea the City ever had a Smart City Strategy or indeed that they had been one of the Top20 in the Intelligent Community Forum ratings!”
And this got me thinking…