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The term “Smart City” is to-date widely used, but little clarity ap-pears in the definition behind it. Several approaches led to a growing emphasis on the combined use of geographic information and communication technology to build cognitive frameworks in city planning and management. The present paper tackles an effort to define ‘smart cities’ and to identify both elements of smartness, and critical aspects related to the current interpretation of the term. In particular, the risk of considering the technological layer of Smart City as an innovative element has been observed, highlighting, on the contrary, the need to consider Smart Cities in terms of a major urban planning effort to coordinate and harmonize different urban players, sustained by ICT instruments.
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B. Murgante et al. (Eds.): ICCSA 2013, Part III, LNCS 7973, pp. 630–642, 2013.
© Springer-Verlag Berlin Heidelberg 2013
Cities and Smartness: A Critical Analysis
of Opportunities and Risks
Beniamino Murgante1 and Giuseppe Borruso2
1 University of Basilicata, 10,Viale dell’Ateneo Lucano, 85100 Potenza, Italy
2 University of Trieste, P. le Europa 1, 34127 Trieste, Italy
beniamino.murgante@unibas.it, giuseppe.borruso@econ.units.it
Abstract. The term “Smart City” is to-date widely used, but little clarity ap-
pears in the definition behind it. Several approaches led to a growing emphasis
on the combined use of geographic information and communication technology
to build cognitive frameworks in city planning and management. The present
paper tackles an effort to define ‘smart cities’ and to identify both elements of
smartness, and critical aspects related to the current interpretation of the term.
In particular, the risk of considering the technological layer of Smart City as an
innovative element has been observed, highlighting, on the contrary, the need to
consider Smart Cities in terms of a major urban planning effort to coordinate
and harmonize different urban players, sustained by ICT instruments.
Keywords: Smart city, Smart communities, Neogeography, Open data, Citizens
as sensors, Governance.
1 Smart City: A Non-unique Definition
Although the term “Smart City” is to-date widely used, little clarity appears in the
definition behind it and particularly on its actual meaning.
The idea behind a Smart City is that in the current digital age, not only physical in-
frastructures and endowment of a city characterize an urban area and its functions, but
something less ‘hard’ and not so easy to identify, as quality of knowledge communi-
cation and ‘social infrastructure’, or social and intellectual capitals. In such an (urban)
environment, mood and attitude, the concept of Smart City arises, as a device or, bet-
ter, as a framework where ‘traditional’ urban production factors are coupled with the
social, cultural capital, by means of a massive use of ICTs.
The stress – quite agreed to-date – tends to be on 6 main axes of ‘smartness’
including economy, mobility, environment, people, living and governance (Table 1).
Such axes include the concepts behind neoclassical theories of urban growth, sustain-
able development, ICT and citizens’ participation in urban governance.
In these terms, a smart city is something more than ‘just’ a digital or an intelligent
city, where the attention is mainly drawn on the ICT components, as enabling connec-
tion and exchange of data and information within an urban environment. Given the ‘6
axes’ and the attention to growth, sustainability, ICT and citizens’ governance and
Cities and Smartness: A Critical Analysis of Opportunities and Risks 631
participation, a smart city appears more like a new ‘urban utopia’, although not too
difficult to be realized, and basically as the evolution of the sustainable city, in terms
of combining economic, social and environmental aspects to elements of social and
cultural capital, as well as to the power of ICT technologies and applications. Going
back to the beginning of this paragraph, if it is true that a city’s physical infrastruc-
ture, as well as its endowments, are the result of a process of interaction between hu-
mans and (urban) environment, it is also true that physical infrastructures (buildings,
roads, utilities) are built by humans to ease urban growth and development, while
their presence and essence give also a direction for future development and evolutions
or represent a constraint. So there is a mutual exchange of influences and causal rela-
tions. As De Biase states, reminding Winston Churchill’s words: “We shape our
buildings; thereafter they shape us”. Smart cities are not so different in this sense. Of
course, buildings and infrastructures are still being built in cities, but to-date, such
buildings and infrastructures are also those not immediately visible and ‘fix’ in space
and time. ICTs infrastructures, as well as devices based on them, shape structures and
functions of cities, being XXI century equivalent of medieval cathedrals, ordered
Renaissance’ squares and XIX century railway stations.
Other definitions containing an attribute coupled with the term ‘city’ in the (also
recent) past provided quite a concrete and almost precise orientation and meaning.
Without going back to utopian cities population, various periods of human times or
ideal cities dating back to the Renaissance, also the recent concept of sustainable city
hold a quite strong and well-defined set of attributes describing its characters.
This is not true, at present, for the locution ‘smart city’. The different definitions
meanings provided in different areas of the World have in common the implication of
technology, and, particularly, the wide use of ICT infrastructures and devices. How-
ever, such elements can represent either the most important and relevant part or just a
component of an overall meaning.
2 Virtual Cities, Computable City and Ubiquitus City
The concept of Smart city can derive from several approaches, sometimes slogans,
which lead to a growing emphasis on the combined use of geographic information and
communication technology to build cognitive frameworks in city planning and man-
agement.
Since the late '90s, with the growing diffusion of the internet, the experience of
Virtual Cities beginning [1] has focused on construction and representation of urban
scenarios. The use of Virtual Reality Modeling Language (VRML) allowed the crea-
tion of virtual environments and three-dimensional models of cities usability on the
internet. This experience is not only restricted to simulation fields, but, using the large
internet diffusion, it has been used to create online participatory experiences, allowing
part of the population to take part in urban policies creation. In other cases, citizens
were allowed to contribute to a neighbourhood renewal project choice [2] [3] [4] [5]
simply by means of electronic vote.
632 B. Murgante and G. Borruso
Batty [6] considered the huge possibilities deriving from a massive convergence of
computer and communications through various forms of media.
Initially computers were used as a deeper support in city planning and program-
ming. In subsequent years, interest has been moved on how computers and informa-
tion technologies are changing cities. The result is the concept of Computable City
[6], focused on the simultaneous analysis of both aspects. This concept examined both
the ways in which computers were changing methods for city understanding and
changes in city structure and dynamics. Later on, other types of computing with
strong impact on the city have been adopted, such as ubiquitous computing, pervasive
computing, physical computing, tangible media, each as facet of an interaction coher-
ent paradigm, which Greenfield [7] (2006) defines “everyware”. At the end of 1990s,
Openshaw [8] [9] coined the term Geocomputation, considering two main issues:
intensity of the process and increase of knowledge and intelligence. This expression
has been interpreted according to several meanings. Ehlen et al. [10] analyzed four
aspects of Geocomputation: from a high performance computing point of view, as a
set of spatial analysis methods, as the essential aspects of Geocomputation and as
their relationship with GIS [39] [40]. In some cases there is a transition from a vision
based on a computing power to a distributed environment where computers, seen in
their traditional sense, disappear.
Consequently, the concept of computable city assumed increasing importance with
the growth of electronic devices in our physical environment [11].
The transition towards a not only virtual environment, i.e. an environment with a deep
human and social interaction through computers, characterizes urban computing [12].
These theories take into account the social dimension of human environments, placing
computers at the background. Shepard and Greenfield's [12] theories on urban computing
coupled with ubiquitous computing research developed at the Xerox Palo Alto Research
Centre [13] promoted the first experiences of ubiquitous cities [14], mainly concentrated
in Asia. The objective of an ubiquitous city (U-city) is to create an integrated environ-
ment, where citizens can get any type of services, in all places, at any time and with all
kinds of ICT devices [15]. These applications are based on infrastructures with the aim to
support local needs by improving daily life of local communities.
The possibility of using real time acquired data, allowing continuous monitoring of
main urban phenomena, can substantially improve the effectiveness of spatial plan-
ning and urban management. There is a transition from a traditional approach, based
on the sequence real city, computer, virtual representation, to the sequence, computer,
real city, ubiquitous city.
The traditional sequence considered many people working on one or on a few
computers, while in U-city sequence only one person handles much computers and
electronic devices [16].
3 Open Government and Gov. 2.0
A large amount of information produced by human activities and automated systems
Information-Explosion Era [17] is available, not only in Asia, where experiences of
U-city are mostly concentrated.
Cities and Smartness: A Critical Analysis of Opportunities and Risks 633
In the last five years, acceleration occurred, supported by the diffusion of GPS de-
vices and 3G connections in mobile phones, which has led to a large production of
geo-localized or social networks based applications. This has led to a huge activity of
Crowdsourcing [18], where suggestions services, ideas and any decision support can
be achieved by online communities’ actions. Population directly provides certain
services that government is not interested to develop and private sector does not con-
sider convenient to realize.
There are more and more initiatives (OpenStreetMap, WikiMapia, Google Map
Maker, Geo-Wiki) of Volunteered Geographic Information [19], based on mass
collaboration to create, manage and disseminate geographic data where citizens are
voluntary sensors [20]. The huge production of data on the web has led to "Neo-
geography" [21], defined as a new approach to geography without geographers [22]
which describes the bottom-up production of maps with geo-tagged photos, videos,
blogs, Wikipedia, etc. [23].
Another important tendency in progress in recent years is open government. Such
an approach is based on a more participative method of government and it starts from
the assumption that ideas of citizens have always to be collected, not only before elec-
tions. Consequently, public involvement, getting ideas and suggestions, is a daily
activity, aiming to have a wider inspiration in managing and to collect feedback in
already started actions. Obama’s administration has given a great impetus to this ap-
proach, implementing such a policy and enlarging the possibility to capture public
imagination by means of social networks, blogs and all possible solutions to directly
interact with citizens.
This new approach is often called Gov. 2.0. Open government without a 2.0 ap-
proach is still based on a direct action. “Providers” are a sort of Right to Information,
where the administration tries to inform people, but interacting just with main stake-
holders. Gov. 2.0 is a more open approach, which “enables” citizens to have an im-
portant role in defining policies. Social media and all 2.0 platforms are a key element
in generating a direct contact with citizens. Extensions of 2.0 philosophy changed
completely the relationship between citizens and administration [24].
It is a type of governance where aspects related to participatory decision-making
are central and the transition from Government to Governance is combined with vi-
sioning techniques.
Since early '90s a transition occurred from an approach where local authorities di-
rectly provide to problem solutions (Government), to another approach, where local
authorities tend to accompany the process (Governance). In the latter one, administra-
tions enable and facilitate the search of different solutions, in collaboration and
agreement with other public and private stakeholders [25] [26]. In the same years
visioning methods were adopted in order to develop bottom-up contributions, funda-
mental in planning process. This technique emphasizes plan communication aspects,
highlighting the importance of social imagination as a contribution to the definition of
a scenario of desirable actions in planning process [27].
In a lot of cases traditional participatory approaches, based on public meetings,
proved to be unsuccessful, due to restricted number of participants who did not repre-
sent a significant sample. Electronic participation goes beyond space and time
634 B. Murgante and G. Borruso
dimensions, allowing all citizens, who may be working during the meeting time, or
live in a distant place, or are embarrassed of public speaking, to express their opinions
and producing a significant contribution in improving ideas.
Ten years ago, Kingston [28] adapted Arnstein [29] ladder to electronic era, defin-
ing E-participation Ladder, adopting several levels from a simple web site to online
decision-making. Haklay [30], considering citizens cooperation, distinguishes four
levels of citizens science, where crowdsourcing is the lowest level and the highest
level is a sort of collaborative science, where citizens can have the responsibility to
define problems and to find possible solutions. Today we are living in wikification
era, with many successful initiatives based on mass collaboration [31] [32], which
may also lead to a wiki approach to decisions and planning [33] [34].
4 City Sensing and Smart City
City sensing is based on electronic and human sensors or on the combination of both
[35], on voluntary or unconscious actions [36], and it is a key component in Smart City.
It is central to correctly define the relationship between city sensing and smart city,
because these are new concepts without a precise and unambiguous definition.
Considering also that the application domain is the city, whose elements are rooted
in our daily lives, there is a risk, in analogy with what happened with the concept of
sustainability, that after many years we have collected a lot of words and few results.
The correct relationship between city and sensing Smart city must be based on equal
dignity of all aspects. It could happen to forget the city, focusing the attention only on
technology. The main risk would be represented by a fall of electronic devices on the
city, which does not have a direct relationship with its main problems.
In analogy with the beginnings of geographic information systems, when the mar-
ket was mainly determined by supply more than by demand, the risk is to invest sig-
nificant resources in purchasing hardware and software without having a clear idea of
administration needs and their possible use in city management.
The European experience differs from U-city in giving less importance to compu-
tational aspects and in paying more attention to the potential of technologies for the
improvement of city quality. Great attention has been paid to digital citizenship that
leads to new forms of social organization related to information technology.
A shared definition identifies smart cities in a synthesis of physical and social in-
frastructures [37], where the first one can represent a catalyst for knowledge commu-
nication, increasing social and intellectual capital. A superficial approach combined
with a rush to be included under "smart umbrella", can lead to ignore these aspects,
mainly focusing on improving devices and technological systems which quickly get
old. A city can be considered smart if it can quickly integrate and synthesize data
produced by each type of sensor, to improve efficiency, equity, sustainability and
quality of life [38]. It is important to consider the big impact of technologies on new
forms of policy and planning. In analyzing smart cities, Batty et al. [38] identify seven
points on which the attention should be focused, analyzing key problems of cities,
using information and communication technologies:
Cities and Smartness: A Critical Analysis of Opportunities and Risks 635
1. a new understanding of urban problems;
2. effective and feasible ways to coordinate urban technologies;
3. models and methods to use urban data across spatial and temporal scales;
4. developing new technologies for communication and dissemination;
5. new forms of urban governance and organisation;
6. defining critical problems about cities, transport, and energy;
7. risk, uncertainty and hazard in the smart city.
It is important to give priority to the construction of cognitive frameworks and to a
wider knowledge in supporting decisions in urban planning, compared to approaches
based on procedural efficacy. Today, especially in Europe, compliance with proce-
dures is mainly considered the production of a bureaucratic truth, in most cases very
far from reality, when analysing urban phenomena. Recently, a lot of reports have
been published in order to define variables to classify smartness level of municipali-
ties in a hypothetical path to smarter cities. Table 1 is an attempt to synthesize the
main variables adopted in reports which analyze smart cities.
Table 1. Synthesis of the main variables adopted in reports analyzing smart cities
Dimension Variables
Smart Economy Employment rate; presence of innovative enterprises, presence and quality of
universities and research institutes; infrastructures (roads, railways, airports,
electronic infrastructures, etc.).
Smart Environment Air quality, percentage of separate collection of municipal waste (also electri-
cal and electronic equipment waste), presence of green spaces in the city,
efficiency and quality of water supply (water leakage and water treatment).
Smart Governance Not only related to e-government, percentage of ecological cars, use of recy-
cled paper, energy saving, adoption of ecological policies for city planning
and development, ability to network with other municipalities.
Smart Living Investments in culture and welfare providing several services, from childcare
facilities to community libraries, from counselling structures for old people to
cinemas, number of people below poverty level, hospital emigration rate,
immigrants social integration, criminality rate.
Smart Mobility Extensive and efficient public transportation network, park and ride, great
diffusion of ecological cars, limited traffic areas, cycle paths, bike and car
sharing.
Smart People Education and early school leaving level, number of women working and
holds positions within the administration, presence of foreign students, politi-
cal participation, involvement in voluntary associations, newspapers diffusion
and level of participation to cultural events.
In most cases they are traditional indicators, concerning the city based on old vari-
ables, with the addition of the "smart" attribute. If we delete this last term in the above
table we achieve typical socio-economic or environmental sustainability indicators.
Indicators concerning smartness level of our cities should consider the following
aspects:
1. adoption of OpenData and OCG Standard;
2. free wifi;
636 B. Murgante and G. Borruso
3. projects implementation of augmented reality for tourism;
4. crowdfunding initiatives;
5. decisions taken by crowdsourcing;
6. implementation of INSPIRE Directive;
7. quantity of public services achievable through App.
5 Smart City: The Pillars
Identifying what makes a city smart is related to the different dimensions, which are
connected to concepts quite consolidated in references dealing with urban topics. In
the smart meaning, the technological component is particularly related to ICT features
and infrastructures. These play an important role, in particular as facilitators of proc-
esses of innovation, sharing and active participation by citizens/users, as well as of the
development of elements typical of knowledge economics. Following some of the
most interesting interpretations [42], smart cities are cities in which a ‘technological
layer’ is overlaid onto the existing urban structure and fabric, allowing its citizens and
users to connect to the net, interact among them and with other different players –
public administration, suppliers of goods and services, etc., actually optimizing a city
and its spaces. Since world population is growing and such growth is expected to be
particularly concentrated in cities, technology can play an important role in limiting
soil consumption and enhancing quality of life.
However, one of the risks today is that decision makers, politicians, citizens, enter-
prises focus just on the fashion of the technological side of “smartness”, with little
attention to insert it into a process of urban planning and project.
In a smart city the technological infrastructure related to ICT is central, in the same
way as in the past the realization of new buildings, roads, railways, telephone and
energy distribution lines and networks was. Such infrastructures both supported popu-
lation needs and influenced how such population interacted with the urban space.
Infrastructures of a smart city should play a similar role, therefore needing a focused
planning, as their use must not be limited to the short terms but it should persist and,
actually, persists, having in mind that to-date settings will influence how citizens will
interact with the city in present and future times. In a smart city, the network meta-
phor is overlaid onto the urban metaphor; in such sense acting as a new, different
infrastructure capable of channelling relations and interactions and to be influenced
and shaped by such interactions, similarly to a public transport network developing in
an embryonic city to connect and serve places and then evolving and giving birth to
‘new’ places.
The city should therefore set as an “enabling platform for the activities that citizens
are able to develop, linking those inherited from the past to those that can be realized
in the future, so it is not focused on just applications but on the possibility that citi-
zens realize them” [41].
A smart city should therefore be passed on different pillars, elements to be orga-
nized and linked together. These can be summarized [41] in three main elements
(Figure 1):
Cities and Smartness: A Critical Analysis of Opportunities and Risks 637
1. connections - as networks and technological infrastructures;
2. data – open and public or public interest data to allow the development of
innovative solutions and the interaction between users/citizens and the
city;
3. sensors - these including citizens [19] [20] [22] able to actively participate
in a bottom up way to city activities.
Fig. 1. The Pillars sustaining the Smart City and its Governance (graphical elaboration, after
concepts in De Biase, 2012).
These pillars must be coupled with a governance capable of linking them together,
giving a direction and a vision to the city. Such governance should regulate the smart
city in a neutral way, without entering into the details for applications and contents.
A Smart city therefore appears as an urban project, as a big infrastructure and as a
metaphor of the net in an urban context. In a sentence, a smart city becomes an envi-
ronment where a definite set of elements, as the ones above reported – sensors, data
and connections – harmonized by a limited set of basic rules, gives public bodies,
citizens, enterprises the possibility of developing applications and solutions able to
improve life of the city itself, leaving actually the initiative of doing that to people,
groups, firms, etc., allowing also to create new markets and solutions also where the
public sector is not able to move.
6 Are Cities Smart?
Finally, are cities smart? Twenty years ago we would have asked: are cities sustain-
able? In that period, that was the paradigm of the moment – actually it still is – as
cities are the places where main human actions take place and therefore the places
638 B. Murgante and G. Borruso
where to set policies aimed at a sustainable future in terms of adequate and respectful
exploitation of resources from an economic, environmental and social point of view.
How does ‘smart’ differ from sustainable? And why is it different? What elements
were added? Smart cities – and communities! - aim at sustainable development. Actu-
ally the six dimensions of smart cities share the basic dimensions of sustainability in
development: environmental, economic and social. Of course a difference is in the
presence of a ‘techy layer’ as Ratti [42] pointed out – see above –particularly charac-
terized by the revolution occurred in ICT, that allows an unprecedented opportunity of
interactions among places, individuals, organizations. This is the real revolution, cou-
pled with the spreading of mobile devices and the increasing precision in location
allowed by geospatial technologies (embedded GPS receivers, etc.). Therefore, the
role of citizens or city users changed in time, making them potential and powerful
influencers and actors in the urban arena, both in terms of serving their communities,
highlighting critical elements, or participating to public meeting on policy choices,
but also implementing their own economic activities based on ICT and interaction.
Citizens – as one of the pillars – are considered as sensors. But what sensors? Are
sensors only citizens with a mobile device connected to the Internet? A Smart City
holds a strong social dimension, particularly in terms of inclusion of its citizens and in
enabling solutions to be implemented to tackle that. However, a ‘techy’ orientation
and particularly the view of smartness just and mainly focused on developing smart
apps, tools and devices seems to be going towards a direction of affecting just a part
of the urban population and users, as those ‘Hi-Tech aware’, or those that to-date are
constantly connected using mobile devices – smartphones, tablet pc, etc. In doing so,
digital divide issues can arise. At present and worldwide just part of the population
has access to the Internet and to IT devices. In these terms a ‘smartness’ just limited
to a ‘rainfall of apps’ would only affect a subset of the population, thus worsening
social disparities rather than reducing them. Talking about citizens as sensors, we
could say that this is not completely new, just faster, simpler and wider. Citizens have
been participating to urban issues since the emerging of various media. Letters to
newspapers, local municipalities, phone calls, have always been ways of pointing out
faults in urban fabrics rather than bad services. Of course at present that can be done
by means of a geo-tagged photo shared among social media and networks and there-
fore more easily reaching a vast amount of users and bodies.
So a Smart City, as an enabling platform, should allow both the development and
hosting of ‘rainfall of apps’ but also including other less-techy users – phone callers,
etc. – and in that lays the difficulty: that of building a real network and making things
work. What is the point in having cutting edge mobile applications that, say, allow
you communicating to your municipality about a sewage leak close to a primary
school, if behind that the public body did not set any infrastructure, procedure and
habit to tackle such an issue? So smartness should act as a cultural product other than
Cities and Smartness: A Critical Analysis of Opportunities and Risks 639
a)
b)
c)
Fig. 2. The evolution of the Web. a) Web 1.0, b) Web 2.0, c) Web 3.0
a technological feature. Also, attention should be put in the interaction between public
bodies and public utility bodies, in that allowing the interaction not just in the Web
2.0 approach, but going to the ‘Web 3.0’ one, in which institutions share their data
and contents not just with users but between them, thus generating misunderstandings
and mismatching (Figure 2).
The problem of governance and setting common rules becomes the real question in
the smartness of smart cities. Thinking about the ‘smart infrastructure’, a code of rules
should be agreed, in a similar way of the highway code that allows us driving on a
road network and avoiding – in most of the cases – problems respecting minimal re-
strictions.
640 B. Murgante and G. Borruso
7 Conclusions
Smart city as a paradigm is the result of the evolution of thinking and reasoning over
the city and its issues. In particular, it seems to be a combination of concepts related
to sustainability and sustainable development, in terms of its urban application. Also,
the idea of ‘locally acting’ originally proposed for urban sustainability, presents some
of the suggestions that few years later have been introduced in participation of citi-
zens and the web 2.0. Furthermore, Smart city derives from the evolution of technol-
ogy and thinking in the digital era. Digital City, Computable City and Virtual City are
just a few of the names used to identify a city where the technological component is
strongly present and affects how citizens use and interact with the city.
The revolutions of sustainability, digital era, spread of the Internet, of mobile de-
vices and data availability, as well as the revolutions in Geographical Information, led
to a widespread availability of devices, connections and data and the opportunity to
link them together and develop applications with high added value capable to enhance
quality of urban life. An attention to applications and to ‘techy’ aspects related to city
therefore arose, opening new issues and opportunities.
The debate is still on-going, but some reflections lead to think to Smart Cities as a
revolution intervening in terms of a new infrastructure and platform, made of both
virtual and physical elements, enabling citizens, users and all different urban players
to carry on activities and realize applications thanks to the opportunity allowed by
improvements in technology and its widespread presence. In such terms, we talk
about an infrastructure conceptually not different from transport ones, developed in
the past years and centuries, that both allowed to enlarge the city extension and to
connect places once not part of the city, as well as to drive the development of new
urban areas.
Vital is also the setting of rules and of a governance, acting as an highway code for
city users, with little interference with the life of the city itself.
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... Tanulmányunk előző részében bemutattuk és összefoglaltuk az okosváros-megközelítést, majd azokat a buktatókat és tanulságokat, melyeket a szerteágazó kutatások és empirikus tanulmányok, projektek alapján levonhatunk. Alfred Marshall már közel másfél évszázada azt írta, hogy a kommunikációs eszközök egyre olcsóbbá válása megváltoztatja azokat az erőket, melyek az egyes iparágak letelepítését befolyásolják (Marshall 1890). Azóta az információs és kommunikációs technológiák ugrásszerű és folyamatos fejlődésének hatása a gazdasági tevékenységek térbeli szerveződésére tudományos és politikai viták egész sorát váltotta ki. ...
... Azóta az információs és kommunikációs technológiák ugrásszerű és folyamatos fejlődésének hatása a gazdasági tevékenységek térbeli szerveződésére tudományos és politikai viták egész sorát váltotta ki. A tér és az új gazdaság kapcsolatát vizsgáló kutatások nyomán az 1960-as évektől kibontakozó vitában voltak, akik szerint az új technológiákkal a gazdasági tevékenység a centrumok irányából a perifériák felé mozdul el, melynek következtében egy "globális falu" alakul ki (McLuhan 1964). Berry (1973) hasonlóképpen gondolkodott, amikor úgy vélte, hogy a kommunikációs technológiák megszüntetik a magterülethez kötődő városokat. ...
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