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Smart Technologies for Sustainable Urban and Regional Development

A special issue of Sustainability (ISSN 2071-1050). This special issue belongs to the section "Sustainable Urban and Rural Development".

Deadline for manuscript submissions: closed (31 August 2023) | Viewed by 30773

Special Issue Editors

School of Architecture and Built Environment, Queensland University of Technology, Brisbane, Australia
Interests: smart technologies, communities, cities and urbanism; knowledge-based development of cities and innovation districts; sustainable and resilient cities; communities and urban ecosystems
Special Issues, Collections and Topics in MDPI journals
BISITE Research Group, Edificio Multiusos I+D+I, University of Salamanca, 37007 Salamanca, Spain
Interests: artificial Intelligence; machine learning; edge computing; distributed computing; Blockchain; consensus model; smart cities; smart grid
Special Issues, Collections and Topics in MDPI journals

Special Issue Information

Dear Colleagues,

The complexities of contemporary and emerging living spaces, cities, and societies are on the rise, endangering the sustainability of everything, be it individuals, families, institutions, governments, cities, societies, businesses, economies, or our planet. The deteriorating state of social, environmental, and economic sustainability is manifest in the frequency and severity of natural pandemics and disasters, civil unrest, international wars, torn social fibres across societies, racial and economic inequities, etc. The UN’s sustainable development goals (SDGs) accentuate the need for urgent, holistic, and collaborative action on the triple bottom line (TBL), i.e., social, environmental, and economic sustainability.

While complexities are on the rise, never before have we been equipped with the advanced technologies of today to monitor, analyse, make decisions, and act on the environment [1,2]. These technologies include, among others, miniaturization and digitisation of sensors and actuators, social and virtual sensing, Internet of Things (IoT), data-driven methods, AI-driven insights and optimisations, digital twins, and cloud, fog, and edge computing. These technologies are transforming into things of science fiction such as flying cars, autonomous systems, robots, drones, and self-driving vehicles.

While technologies are revolutionising our lives, we could also use them to perpetually develop, monitor, and improve policies, strategies, legislation, processes, and procedures that embed, maintain, and protect TBL sustainability in our cyber-physical world. That is, technological advancements such as the Internet of Things (IoT), big data, and machine learning have made it possible to create autonomous systems that allow us to monitor processes in real-time and at a much finer level and perpetually improve policies, procedures, and infrastructure to protect TBL sustainability. There is a need to understand and fully exploit the benefits of the emerging technologies to develop autonomous systems that are built to be intrinsically sustainable. Research efforts are needed at both the policy and infrastructure levels. A particular technology of interest here is “green artificial intelligence” or “green AI” that “moves away from short-term efficiency solutions to focus on a long-term ethical, responsible and sustainable AI practice that will help build sustainable urban futures for all through smart city transformation” [2].

This Special Issue invites papers proposing systematic approaches towards the development of smart digital technologies for the conception, innovation, design, and operation of systems for sustainable urban and regional development. The submissions can be research papers, case reports, viewpoints, or literature reviews.

We welcome manuscripts that contribute to policy, strategy, legislation, process, or infrastructure development or their interfaces. The intention of this approach is to invite submissions that will enable us to develop a holistic overview such that different communities working in policy and infrastructure research can establish a dialogue and understand the cross-disciplinary issues and collaboratively devise holistic and globally optimum solutions for sustainable development. 

References

  1. Alotaibi, S.; Mehmood, R.; Katib, I.; Rana, O.; Albeshri, A. Sehaa: A Big Data Analytics Tool for Healthcare Symptoms and Diseases Detection Using Twitter, Apache Spark, and Machine Learning. Sci. 2020, 10, 1398.
  2. Yigitcanlar, T.; Mehmood, R.; Corchado, J.M. Green Artificial Intelligence: Towards an Efficient, Sustainable and Equitable Technology for Smart Cities and Futures. Sustainability 2021, 13,

Prof. Dr. Rashid Mehmood
Prof. Dr. Tan Yigitcanlar
Prof. Dr. Juan M. Corchado
Guest Editors

Manuscript Submission Information

Manuscripts should be submitted online at www.mdpi.com by registering and logging in to this website. Once you are registered, click here to go to the submission form. Manuscripts can be submitted until the deadline. All submissions that pass pre-check are peer-reviewed. Accepted papers will be published continuously in the journal (as soon as accepted) and will be listed together on the special issue website. Research articles, review articles as well as short communications are invited. For planned papers, a title and short abstract (about 100 words) can be sent to the Editorial Office for announcement on this website.

Submitted manuscripts should not have been published previously, nor be under consideration for publication elsewhere (except conference proceedings papers). All manuscripts are thoroughly refereed through a single-blind peer-review process. A guide for authors and other relevant information for submission of manuscripts is available on the Instructions for Authors page. Sustainability is an international peer-reviewed open access semimonthly journal published by MDPI.

Please visit the Instructions for Authors page before submitting a manuscript. The Article Processing Charge (APC) for publication in this open access journal is 2400 CHF (Swiss Francs). Submitted papers should be well formatted and use good English. Authors may use MDPI's English editing service prior to publication or during author revisions.

Keywords

  • smart technologies for sustainable urban and regional development
  • big data analytics and systems for sustainable development
  • green artificial intelligence (AI) for sustainable development
  • smart and sustainable pandemic and disaster prevention and management
  • sustainable, autonomous and electric mobility
  • participatory and electronic governance for sustainable development
  • knowledge-based society, economy and governance for sustainable development
  • data-driven and evidence-based governance for sustainable development
  • blockchain technology for sustainable development
  • Industry 4.0/5.0 for sustainable development
  • vertical agricultural farms for sustainable development
  • digital twin technologies for sustainable development
  • creativity and innovation for sustainable development
  • tolerance, collaboration and competitiveness for sustainable development
  • intellectual, human and social capital for sustainable development
  • healthcare, quality of life and liveability for sustainable development
  • education and lifelong learning for sustainable development
  • digital and physical infrastructure for sustainable development
  • 5G and 6G telecommunication technologies and infrastructure to support sustainable development
  • cloud, fog, edge and distributed computing for sustainable development
  • smart homes and precincts for sustainable development
  • privacy, safety and security technologies for sustainable development
  • smart buildings and built environment for sustainable development
  • renewable energies for sustainable development
  • social, economic and environmental resilience theories and technologies for sustainable development

Published Papers (14 papers)

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Editorial

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8 pages, 785 KiB  
Editorial
Smart Technologies for Sustainable Urban and Regional Development
Sustainability 2024, 16(3), 1171; https://doi.org/10.3390/su16031171 - 30 Jan 2024
Viewed by 469
Abstract
In the dynamic landscape of contemporary living spaces, cities, and societies, the call for sustainable urban and regional development resonates with increasing urgency [...] Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Smart Technologies for Sustainable Urban and Regional Development)
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Research

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19 pages, 8038 KiB  
Article
Promoting Sustainable Travel Experiences: A Weighted Parallel Hybrid Approach for Personalized Tourism Recommendations and Enhanced User Satisfaction
Sustainability 2023, 15(19), 14447; https://doi.org/10.3390/su151914447 - 03 Oct 2023
Cited by 1 | Viewed by 970
Abstract
With the growing significance of the tourism industry and the increasing desire among travelers to discover new destinations, there is a need for effective recommender systems that cater to individual interests. Existing tourism mobile applications incorporate recommendation systems to alleviate information overload. However, [...] Read more.
With the growing significance of the tourism industry and the increasing desire among travelers to discover new destinations, there is a need for effective recommender systems that cater to individual interests. Existing tourism mobile applications incorporate recommendation systems to alleviate information overload. However, these systems often overlook the varying importance of different items, resulting in suboptimal recommendations. In this research paper, a novel approach is proposed: a weighted parallel hybrid recommendation system. By considering item weights and leveraging parallel processing techniques, this method significantly enhances the accuracy of the similarity between items, leading to improved recommendation quality and precision. With this approach, users can efficiently and effectively explore new destinations that align with their unique preferences and interests, thereby enhancing their overall tourism experience and satisfaction. To evaluate the effectiveness of the proposed weighted parallel hybrid recommendation system, we conducted experiments using a dataset consisting of 20 users. The results demonstrated that the proposed approach achieved an impressive classification accuracy of 80%. A comparative analysis revealed that the proposed approach outperformed that of existing systems and achieved the best results in terms of classification accuracy. This finding highlights the effectiveness and efficiency of the proposed method in generating and promoting sustainable travel experiences by developing a personalized recommendations system for the unique preferences and interests of individual users. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Smart Technologies for Sustainable Urban and Regional Development)
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24 pages, 2457 KiB  
Article
Breaking Triopoly to Achieve Sustainable Smart Digital Infrastructure Based on Open-Source Diffusion Using Government–Platform–User Evolutionary Game
Sustainability 2023, 15(19), 14412; https://doi.org/10.3390/su151914412 - 01 Oct 2023
Viewed by 1075
Abstract
Technological innovations, including the Internet of Things (IoT) and machine learning, have facilitated the emergence of autonomous systems, promoting triple bottom line (TBL) sustainability. However, the prevalent triopoly of Android, iOS, and Windows introduces substantial obstacles for smart device manufacturers in pursuit of [...] Read more.
Technological innovations, including the Internet of Things (IoT) and machine learning, have facilitated the emergence of autonomous systems, promoting triple bottom line (TBL) sustainability. However, the prevalent triopoly of Android, iOS, and Windows introduces substantial obstacles for smart device manufacturers in pursuit of independent innovation. This research endeavors to elucidate how open-source operating systems can counteract this triopoly and catalyze sustainable digital development. Utilizing evolutionary game theory, we scrutinize the interplay among governments, platforms, and users in championing open-source diffusion. Our analysis unveils two potent evolutionary strategies—incentivized engagement and disengagement—that notably expedite open-source diffusion and attenuate software supply chain risks affiliated with the Android–iOS–Windows triopoly (results). Consequently, this research highlights the critical role of augmenting stakeholder collaboration and bolstering platform reputation in propelling open-source diffusion, thereby providing valuable theoretical insights and practical guidance for the sustainable advancement of smart digital infrastructure. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Smart Technologies for Sustainable Urban and Regional Development)
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18 pages, 3338 KiB  
Article
Perceived Opportunities and Challenges of Autonomous Demand-Responsive Transit Use: What Are the Socio-Demographic Predictors?
Sustainability 2023, 15(15), 11839; https://doi.org/10.3390/su151511839 - 01 Aug 2023
Cited by 2 | Viewed by 1061
Abstract
The adoption of autonomous demand-responsive transit (ADRT) to support regular public transport has the potential to enhance sustainable mobility. There is a dearth of research on the socio-demographic characteristics associated with perceived opportunities and challenges regarding ADRT adoption in Australia. In this research, [...] Read more.
The adoption of autonomous demand-responsive transit (ADRT) to support regular public transport has the potential to enhance sustainable mobility. There is a dearth of research on the socio-demographic characteristics associated with perceived opportunities and challenges regarding ADRT adoption in Australia. In this research, we fill this knowledge gap by determining socio-demographic predictors of perceptions and attitudes towards ADRT, specifically autonomous shuttle buses (ASBs), among adult residents of South East Queensland. This study incorporates a review of prior global studies, a stated preference survey distributed across the case study region, and descriptive and logistic regression analysis. We found that the main perceived opportunity of ASBs is reduced congestion/emissions, while the primary anticipated challenge relates to unreliable technology. Fully employed respondents are likely to be more familiar with autonomous vehicles. Females and those from lower-income households are less likely to have ridden in an autonomous vehicle. Males, those who are younger, have high employment, hail from higher-income households, and with no driver’s licence are all more favourable towards ASBs. Males, those with high employment, and without driver’s licence are likely to be more concerned about traffic accidents when using ASBs. Less-educated respondents and those living in peri-urban areas are likely to be more concerned about fares. Insights are drawn from the current study to inform policymakers to consider key challenges (e.g., trust issues) and target groups (particularly females) in planning public communication strategies to enhance receptiveness to ADRT. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Smart Technologies for Sustainable Urban and Regional Development)
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12 pages, 1857 KiB  
Article
Lifelong Learning as a Factor in the Country’s Competitiveness and Innovative Potential within the Framework of Sustainable Development
Sustainability 2023, 15(13), 9968; https://doi.org/10.3390/su15139968 - 22 Jun 2023
Cited by 3 | Viewed by 1094
Abstract
The aim of this paper is to examine the interdependence between adult education and the competitiveness and innovative potential of the economy in the conditions of sustainable development. To examine the mentioned, we used a sample of data that includes European countries. The [...] Read more.
The aim of this paper is to examine the interdependence between adult education and the competitiveness and innovative potential of the economy in the conditions of sustainable development. To examine the mentioned, we used a sample of data that includes European countries. The Global Competitiveness Index and its components were taken for research as a numerical display of the country’s competitiveness. For indicators of lifelong learning, the share of persons aged 18–64 years involved in education was taken. The paper applies correlation and regression Pearson analysis of comparative data sections. The non-parametric Kruskal–Wallis test and the Wilcoxon–Mann–Whitney test were applied to verify the data, and Vosviewer software was used for bibliometric and graphical analysis. The research findings indicate a strong correlation between lifelong education and the competitiveness and innovative potential of the economy. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Smart Technologies for Sustainable Urban and Regional Development)
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21 pages, 1341 KiB  
Article
Implementing Smart Sustainable Cities in Saudi Arabia: A Framework for Citizens’ Participation towards SAUDI VISION 2030
Sustainability 2023, 15(8), 6648; https://doi.org/10.3390/su15086648 - 14 Apr 2023
Cited by 3 | Viewed by 3959
Abstract
Cities in Saudi Arabia need to expand rapidly due to the rapidly growing urban population. To develop smart sustainable cities (SSC), human, social, and environmental capital investments must be expanded beyond just focusing on technology. There have been several cities that have adopted [...] Read more.
Cities in Saudi Arabia need to expand rapidly due to the rapidly growing urban population. To develop smart sustainable cities (SSC), human, social, and environmental capital investments must be expanded beyond just focusing on technology. There have been several cities that have adopted smart city labels as recognition of the advantages of smart cities. Many countries acknowledge the value of citizens’ involvement in public urban planning and decision making, but it is difficult to evaluate their impact and compare it to other factors. This study aims to develop a citizens’ participation framework, identify any additional stakeholder’s management measures (SMM) (in addition to the ones previously developed by the authors), and explain the relationship with citizens’ participation level (CPL) for driving SSC. Three rounds of the Delphi method were conducted to structure and validate the framework by the decision maker in the field of urban planning and reach a consensus of understanding the drivers of SSC. The study group was limited to 25 participants because this study focuses on the perspective of decision makers toward CP. Mean score (MS) ranking and Kendall Coefficient were used to confirm the importance of these additional stakeholders’ management measures. The results suggest three main component structures of the conceptual framework, which are SMM, CPL, and Citizens’ Participation Recruitment (CPR), which are all necessary for smart sustainable city outcomes (SSCO) for achieving the Future Sustainable Cities Plan (FSCP) within the context of Vision 2030 and government policy in Saudi Arabia. Using the proposed framework will enable all the stakeholders to gain a deeper understanding of SSC and their complex natures from a conceptual and practical standpoint. The contribution to knowledge of this study is by developing a conceptual framework that can support the implementation of SSC, and by providing an understanding the CPR standards and the involvement of citizens in urban development, which eliminates any debate regarding SSC. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Smart Technologies for Sustainable Urban and Regional Development)
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18 pages, 2682 KiB  
Article
Developing an Urban Computing Framework for Smart and Sustainable Neighborhoods: A Case Study of Alkhaledia in Jizan City, Saudi Arabia
Sustainability 2023, 15(5), 4057; https://doi.org/10.3390/su15054057 - 23 Feb 2023
Cited by 1 | Viewed by 1510
Abstract
Urban computing is the incorporation of computing, sensors, and actuation technology into urban life. In Saudi Arabia, the neighborhoods lack an integrated approach to social, economic, and environmental values, thereby creating consequences, such as inefficient mobility, poor environmental protection, low quality of life, [...] Read more.
Urban computing is the incorporation of computing, sensors, and actuation technology into urban life. In Saudi Arabia, the neighborhoods lack an integrated approach to social, economic, and environmental values, thereby creating consequences, such as inefficient mobility, poor environmental protection, low quality of life, and inadequate services or facilities. This article aims to develop a smart sustainable neighborhood framework (SSNF) to create districts that contribute to a healthy environment, sustain a strong community, and thrive in economic value. The framework is created by two main factors, first is identifying and analyzing the categories of urban computing. Second is choosing the appropriate indicators from sets of standards, including sustainable development goal (SDG) 11, as developed by the United Nations. These two factors shaped the proposed “smart and sustainable urban computing framework (SSUCF)” of “people”, “prosperity”, and “environment” dimensions, and it has been applied to the Alkhaledia district as a case study. The result indicates that urban computing can be used as the basis of support, along with smart and sustainable standards to produce an SSNF. Furthermore, with the analysis of relevant data, this framework can be used in similar neighborhoods to enhance the quality of residents’ lives, environmental protection, and economic values. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Smart Technologies for Sustainable Urban and Regional Development)
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15 pages, 3051 KiB  
Article
Exploring the Smart Street Management and Control Platform from the Perspective of Sustainability: A Study of Five Typical Chinese Cities
Sustainability 2023, 15(4), 3438; https://doi.org/10.3390/su15043438 - 13 Feb 2023
Cited by 2 | Viewed by 1432
Abstract
In the context of “smart cities” and stock-based development, street renewal focuses more on quality and sustainability in China. To improve the efficiency of current smart technology applications, a comprehensive whole-life cycle system needs to be established in street space. After sorting out [...] Read more.
In the context of “smart cities” and stock-based development, street renewal focuses more on quality and sustainability in China. To improve the efficiency of current smart technology applications, a comprehensive whole-life cycle system needs to be established in street space. After sorting out the application of smart technologies in the street design guidelines (SDGs) for typical cities in China, the compilation and application of smart technologies for sustainability were categorized into five areas: smart transportation, convenient living, life enrichment, the protection of vulnerable people, and environmental monitoring. Based on theoretical support and realistic needs, a smart street management and control platform (SSMCP) was built. The SSMCP is divided into four layers: the basic information layer for the background, the technology platform layer for the core processing, the institutional protection layer for the guarantee mechanism, and the scene application layer for spatial interactions. The results can provide a scientific reference for improving the sustainability of street space and implementing a “smart cities” project at the street level. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Smart Technologies for Sustainable Urban and Regional Development)
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24 pages, 15359 KiB  
Article
An Economic Feasibility Model for Sustainable 5G Networks in Rural Dwellings of South Africa
Sustainability 2022, 14(19), 12153; https://doi.org/10.3390/su141912153 - 26 Sep 2022
Cited by 1 | Viewed by 2195
Abstract
Numerous factors have shown Internet-based technology to be a key enabler in achieving the sustainable development goals (SDG), as well as narrowing the divide between the global north and south. For instance, smart farming, remote/online learning, and smart grids can be used to, [...] Read more.
Numerous factors have shown Internet-based technology to be a key enabler in achieving the sustainable development goals (SDG), as well as narrowing the divide between the global north and south. For instance, smart farming, remote/online learning, and smart grids can be used to, respectively, address SDGs 1 and 2 (ending poverty and hunger), 3 (quality education), and 7 and 9 (energy and infrastructure development). Though such Internet-based solutions are commonplace in the global north, they are missing or sparsely available in global south countries. This is due to several factors including underdevelopment, which dissuades service providers from investing heavily in infrastructure for providing capable Internet solutions such as 5G networks in these regions. This paper presents a study conducted to evaluate the feasibility of deploying 5G networks in the rural dwellings of South Africa at affordable rates, which would then serve as a pre-cursor for deploying solutions to improve lives and achieve the SDGs. The study evaluates the economic viability of a hybrid network model which combines terrestrial and aerial networks to provide 5G coverage in rural areas. The feasibility study reveals that such a network can be engineered at low monthly subscription fees to the end users and yield good returns to the service providers in rural areas; however, for large but sparsely populated suburban locations, the traditional terrestrial network with base stations is more suitable. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Smart Technologies for Sustainable Urban and Regional Development)
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29 pages, 6566 KiB  
Article
The Development of a Service System for Facilitating Food Resource Allocation and Service Exchange
Sustainability 2022, 14(19), 11987; https://doi.org/10.3390/su141911987 - 22 Sep 2022
Viewed by 1377
Abstract
To address the current limitation of Alternative Food Networks (AFNs) in tackling urban–rural sustainability issues, this study proposes a Cooperative Human-Agent Service System (CHASS) by leveraging the decentralized communication and coordination capability of a multi-agent system. The unique feature of CHASS is the [...] Read more.
To address the current limitation of Alternative Food Networks (AFNs) in tackling urban–rural sustainability issues, this study proposes a Cooperative Human-Agent Service System (CHASS) by leveraging the decentralized communication and coordination capability of a multi-agent system. The unique feature of CHASS is the collaboration between humans and agents for real-world deployment. From the perspective of Service-Dominant Logic (S-DL), value is co-created by involved actors through service exchange; that is, one actor’s service exchanges for other one’s service. With S-DL, technology is treated as an essential actant for resource integration, and the customer is a value co-creator. In this study, we propose a two-phase top trading cycle (TTC) negotiation mechanism to facilitate food resource allocation and service exchange. An agent-based model is developed to simulate the real-world environment and is integrated with CHASS to form a multi-agent simulation for system evaluation. In addition, to generalize the research outcomes, we use regression analysis to clarify the interaction mechanism between the algorithms applied by the platform and human decisions under the moderation of environmental factors. The results show the effectiveness of TTC-Negotiation mechanism to support resource allocation between customers and providers on CHASS. It shows the applicability of CHASS to the cooperative AFNs model. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Smart Technologies for Sustainable Urban and Regional Development)
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19 pages, 3557 KiB  
Article
Research on the Evolution of the Economic Spatial Pattern of Urban Agglomeration and Its Influencing Factors, Evidence from the Chengdu-Chongqing Urban Agglomeration of China
Sustainability 2022, 14(17), 10969; https://doi.org/10.3390/su141710969 - 02 Sep 2022
Cited by 4 | Viewed by 1473
Abstract
To investigate the spatial evolution process of economic development in the urban agglomeration and its influencing factors, the network construction method, modified gravity model, geographic detector and Geographically Weighted Regression (GWR) model are used to analyze the intensity of urban association; then, the [...] Read more.
To investigate the spatial evolution process of economic development in the urban agglomeration and its influencing factors, the network construction method, modified gravity model, geographic detector and Geographically Weighted Regression (GWR) model are used to analyze the intensity of urban association; then, the evolution of economic, spatial pattern and its influencing factors are further discussed, and the Chengdu-Chongqing urban agglomeration of China from 2005 to 2020 is studied as an example. The results show that: (1) the economically developed zones of the Chengdu-Chongqing urban agglomeration mainly concentrated in the core cities of Chengdu and the central city of Chongqing, and the region shows an uneven spatial pattern of economic development distribution. (2) The share of economic linkages with the central city of Chengdu and Chongqing as the twin cities is significant, the intensity of Chengdu and its neighboring cities is gradually decreasing, while the central city of Chongqing has increased, but it still has an insufficient influence on the peripheral areas. (3) The intensities and directions of the factors influencing economic development in the Chengdu-Chongqing urban agglomeration are different. The total output value of the secondary industry, total social fixed asset investment, the number of beds in health institutions, and road freight turnover are significant factors with consistently strong explanatory ability for economic development. The promotion effect of these four significant factors on economic development is mainly concentrated in the eastern and western regions of Chengdu-Chongqing urban agglomeration, while the inhibiting effect is mainly on the cities in the south and north. Based on this study, relevant recommendations are made to promote the coordinated development of the Chengdu-Chongqing urban agglomeration. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Smart Technologies for Sustainable Urban and Regional Development)
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Review

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43 pages, 962 KiB  
Review
Understanding Local Government Digital Technology Adoption Strategies: A PRISMA Review
Sustainability 2023, 15(12), 9645; https://doi.org/10.3390/su15129645 - 15 Jun 2023
Cited by 8 | Viewed by 4144
Abstract
Digital technologies are used in various local government activities. Adopting suitable digital technology strategies could enhance service efficiency, effectiveness, and accountability. The challenges of technology adoption among local governments, however, are also evident. One of the major challenges is capacity, including the lack [...] Read more.
Digital technologies are used in various local government activities. Adopting suitable digital technology strategies could enhance service efficiency, effectiveness, and accountability. The challenges of technology adoption among local governments, however, are also evident. One of the major challenges is capacity, including the lack of knowledge or awareness of how to balance the local government’s resources and the strategies that need to be implemented. This challenge also forms a research gap. The study aims to consolidate the understanding of local government digital technology adoption strategies via the Preferred Reporting Items for Systematic Reviews and Meta-Analyses (PRISMA). It analyses the adoption opportunities, challenges, and strategies through the lens of people, processes, and technology frameworks. The results show that: (a) Strategies concerning the people aspects include building a platform for public participation, employees’ skills, and decision-makers' positive mindset development. (b) Strategies concerning the process aspects include recognizing the players’ roles, having a clear aim and procedure, proper regulation, and receiving user input. (c) Strategies considering the technology aspects include understanding the effect of the technology, technological preparedness, and convenience adoption. The findings inform local government policymakers in digital technology adoption and transformation endeavors. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Smart Technologies for Sustainable Urban and Regional Development)
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13 pages, 243 KiB  
Review
Smart Elderly Care Services in China: Challenges, Progress, and Policy Development
Sustainability 2023, 15(1), 178; https://doi.org/10.3390/su15010178 - 22 Dec 2022
Cited by 4 | Viewed by 4802
Abstract
In 2017, the State Council of China published an action plan for the construction of a smart and healthy elderly care industry (2017–2020). The action plan designed and implemented by the State Council of China demonstrates the Central Government’s determination to informationalise and [...] Read more.
In 2017, the State Council of China published an action plan for the construction of a smart and healthy elderly care industry (2017–2020). The action plan designed and implemented by the State Council of China demonstrates the Central Government’s determination to informationalise and digitalise the Chinese society. Therefore, the market of smart home care services should expectedly mushroom in the coming decades, as the demand for smart home care increase. However, there are a range of barriers to achieving the massification of smart home care services, which will be discussed in the following sections. In addition to the shortage of family care and nursing services, elders being physically and psychologically vulnerable also engenders the Central Government to accelerate the provision of smart home care services to the Chinese elderly population. Here, smart home investment and delivery are necessary when building a sustainable elderly care system. The investment in smart home elderly care can lessen the long-term burden on China’s healthcare system as more elders would be able to self-manage their everyday life and minor physical and psychological problems. In this article, the author would critically analyses China’s implementation of smart home elderly care services, particularly on the benefits and challenges of technological advancement in elderly care and the advantages and problems of relevant policy development. The author also highlights how the informationalisation and digitalisation in elderly care and policy development enhance the convenience of the elderly populations’ everyday life when family care is limited or absent. Additionally, the author assesses what the gaps are in existing smart home elderly care technologies and policy development that need to be addressed by Chinese policymakers to further advance the safety and convenience of the elderly cohorts’ living. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Smart Technologies for Sustainable Urban and Regional Development)
21 pages, 632 KiB  
Review
A Review of Contemporary Governance Challenges in Oman: Can Blockchain Technology Be Part of Sustainable Solutions?
Sustainability 2022, 14(19), 11819; https://doi.org/10.3390/su141911819 - 20 Sep 2022
Cited by 5 | Viewed by 2538
Abstract
Oman is considering adopting the latest e-governance technology, including Blockchain-based. While much research was conducted into the benefits and risks of Blockchain-based in information systems and finance fields, fewer researchers investigated the opportunities and risks associated with adopting Blockchain-based frameworks for governance and [...] Read more.
Oman is considering adopting the latest e-governance technology, including Blockchain-based. While much research was conducted into the benefits and risks of Blockchain-based in information systems and finance fields, fewer researchers investigated the opportunities and risks associated with adopting Blockchain-based frameworks for governance and public administration, especially in highly bureaucratic, centralized rentier states, such as Oman. As the first phase of an exploratory sequential mixed-methods study, our purpose was to identify key governance problems in contemporary Oman and analyze each problem against evidence drawn from the relevant parts of the Blockchain-based and e-governance literature to evaluate the potential utility, risks and limitations associated with adopting block-chained e-governance solutions in the Sultanate. Our initial results indicate that there are advantages for states, such as Oman, from being an early mover into block-chained e-governance systems, including greater cost efficiency, drastically improved accuracy and reliability of information systems, transparency and accountability of public services, and an upgrade in the overall level of legitimacy and public trust in the institutions of governance. However, more research into the risks related to reconciling block-chained systems with the dynamics of labor, tax reforms and centralized authority in a rentier social contract is required. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Smart Technologies for Sustainable Urban and Regional Development)
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