Re:CAP Recommends | Why Big Data Is a Big Deal for Cities

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February 10, 2017

Re:CAP Recommends: “Why Big Data Is a Big Deal for Cities” by John M. Kamensky for Governing

Who: John M. Kamensky is a senior fellow with the IBM Center for the Business of Government. Dr. Kamensky’s article is based on the work of Dr. Alfred Ho of the School of Public Policy at the University of Kansas.

What: Big data has become highly beneficial to some sectors but has yet to take hold in others. Cities have started to harness the power of big data, and, although it may be too soon to tell, indicators look favorable according to research by Dr. Ho. on mid-sized cities.

Takeaway: Public works, social services, law enforcement, and others are finding ways to use the power of big data to solve complex problems of city management. Cities like Los Angeles are beginning to uncover insightful trends in data, enabling them to become more efficient in the strategic application of limited resources. For cities, where budgets are finite, that’s a great thing. The takeaway: For cities, there is value in data. Mining big data to reveal behavior patterns can lead to more efficient governance and potentially long-term cost savings through better management.

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