About Uraia Platform
The Uraia Platform was established as a collaboration between the Global Fund for the Development of Cities (FMDV) and UN-Habitat in June 2014 in Santander, Spain in order to respond to the needs of the cities to share experiences, successes with other public administrations.
The Uraia Platform was created as a platform between local governments and their partners about the possibilities offered by the introduction of new technologies to local public management. The platform aims at facilitating the access to information, offering capacity-building opportunities, and fostering experimentation in three specific aspects of city management: municipal finances, management of public services and infrastructure, transparency and accountability.
Once a year, the members of Uraia meet up to discuss a topic that is priority in their agenda and jointly elaborate guidelines, collect practices and assess projects with common elements of interest. In 2004, the Platform partners met in Santander, Spain to exchange experiences, discuss needs and define the strategic priorities and activities of Uraia. In 2015, the Platform met in Oslo, Norway to discuss partners’ experiences on smart projects led in collaboration with private companies. Based on the experiences of the participants, the Platform elaborated a document on Public-Private Partnerships for Smart City Management. In 2016, the Platform met in Nicosia, Cyprus to discuss Smart Technologies and Municipal Budgets and the publication of the workshop is released.
Nicosia 2016 Workshop on Smart Technologies and Municipal Budgets
The Uraia 2016 Publication on Smart Technologies and Municipal Finances is the outcome of the discussions during the workshop organized on 19-20th of April 2016 in Nicosia, Cyprus under the title of “The Impact of Smart Technologies in the Municipal Budget: Tax Recovery and Energy Savings for Better Public Services”.
The exchanges focused particularly on exploring how technological innovation can help cities to increase municipal revenue by improving tax collection and generate savings through energy efficient policies and how these increased municipal resources can be transformed into better, more efficient and inclusive public services.
The workshop gathered a group of 30 participants, including representatives from cities and local governments both in developing and industrialized countries, associations of local governments, global and national; private companies involved in the provision of public services, innovation in public administration, telecommunications, mobile apps, etc., organizations from civil society.
The Uraia 2016 Publication on Smart Technologies And Municipal Finances
The publication analyze trends and opportunities regarding existing technological solutions and also risks, challenges and lessons learned. Each chapter comprises city case studies, as well as interviews with key actors and concludes with recommendations about the elements that enable the success of smart initiatives.
The first chapter highlights a few ways in which local governments can use smart technologies in municipal management to reduce the cost of government operations and contribute to increase municipal revenues.
More specifically the first chapter focuses on SMART solutions that optimize municipal management such as management platforms and online services to citizens, encourage smarter payment systems such as e-procurement and mobile money and increase revenue through better tax collection and administration and local economic development promotion.
The second chapter shows how cities can use smart technologies to improve transparency, accountability and citizen participation and how can this produce a positive impact on municipal finances. The chapter presents a series of smart solutions that may strengthen the trust of citizens in the local government and thus on the long run lead to an increase in tax revenues.
The third chapter of the publication focuses on how local governments can apply smart technologies in the energy generation, distribution and consumption level, in order to reduce the municipal energy bill, while at the same time, providing a growing population with universal access to energy services, and reducing energy consumption to protect the environment. It covers topics such as street lighting, building efficiency and smart grid technology.
The last chapter focuses on the main issues and solutions regarding how local governments can use Smart technologies to improve cost-efficiency in the management of three main municipal services: transportation, waste and water. Although the equation between smart technologies – efficiency improvement – impact on municipal budget it is not easily quantifiable, the impacts are concrete and verifiable. Initiatives such as smart parking, smart cards, intelligent waste collection, and sensors network to detect water leakages are addressed and have proved to generate savings for local governments around the world.
For more information about the publication please visit the website: http://www.uraia.org