The Covid-19 pandemic has exposed some fundamental flaws in our social fabric. But if we can take learnings, a new system can emerge that is more resilient to the huge challenges our society is facing. Something different, better, smarter. What solutions and opportunities does such a Smart Society offer? Are we even prepared for it? And how do we embrace change? We are looking for the answers in a series of blogs in which we examine the past and the future of the municipal or urban settings. In this first one: observations.
The 21st century is one of unprecedented growth, when it comes to the (ageing) world population, global prosperity and urbanisation. However, these tendencies are increasingly conflicting. Moreover, the pandemic has been a rough awakening out of our illusionary social model that we can ‘take care of the community by taking care of ourselves'. That leaves us with choices: what do we sacrifice in exchange for more control over what is essential in our lives? In other words, what rules apply in a Smart Society, where city infrastructure, services and citizen behaviour interact?