The chapter sets out to explain the KBD processes and challenges and opportunities in information acceptance and use in urban policy making. This chapter draws on providing a clear understanding on policy frameworks and relevant ICT applications of the Queensland Smart State experience.
In the information era, sustainable economic growth and development is highly associated with knowledge economies (Metcalfe & Ramlogan, 2005). The term knowledge economy was first introduced by the OECD in 1996. A knowledge economy creates, distributes, and uses knowledge to generate value and gives rise to “a network society, where the opportunity and capability to access and join knowledge and learning intensive relations determines the socio-economic position of individuals and firms” (Clarke, 2001). Rapid advances in ICTs during the last two decades established the infrastructure that enables the knowledge economy to scale up. The main novelty of the knowledge economy consisted of the need to manage an intangible asset that, in contrast to material resources, does not depreciate through use but rather becomes more valuable the more it is used (Laszlo & Laszlo, 2006).
According to Buckley and Mini (2000) a city’s knowledge economy is the economic wealth and well being that results from the effective investment in people and ideas that create an environment where information, creativity, goods and services are produced and exchanged, drawing on best practices. It requires a skilled labor force, up-to-date knowledge, effective use of technology (primarily ICTs), and broad city resources that foster a productive urban economy. In this process, communication, good governance and partnerships are developed with all major stakeholders.
KBD is a powerful strategy for economic growth and the post-industrial development of cities and nations to participate in the knowledge economy. It is a strategic management approach, applicable to purposeful human organizations in general (Carillo, 2002). KBD has two purposes: The first one is, it is a strategy that codifies technical knowledge for the innovation of products and services, market knowledge for understanding changes in consumer choices and tastes, financial knowledge to measure the inputs and outputs of production processes, and human knowledge in the form of skills and creativity, within an economic model (Lever, 2002). The later one is that, it indicates the intention to increase the skills and knowledge of people as a means for individual and social development (Gonzalez, Alvarado, & Martinez, 2005). KBD policies includes: developing and adopting the state of art ICTs, distributing instrumental capital, developing human capital, and developing capital systems (Carrillo, 2002).