Digital Cities: Towards Connected Citizens and Governance

Digital Cities: Towards Connected Citizens and Governance

Leonidas Anthopoulos (TEI Larissa, Greece) and Panos Fitsilis (TEI Larissa, Greece)
DOI: 10.4018/978-1-61520-933-0.ch017
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The digital cities, from their online forms such as America-On-Line and Kyoto cases, to their ubiquitous forms such as Beijing, Hull (UK) and Trikala (Greece) cases, have achieved in simplifying citizen access to Local and Central Government services. Early digital cities succeed in delivering improved public services to citizens even with no digital skills, closing digital divide and establishing digital areas of trust in local communities. This chapter presents the evolution of the digital cities, from the web to the ubiquitous architecture, which can deliver multiple services to different target groups and can behave as a common “interface” between citizens and all kinds of public agencies. The chapter will focus on the latest digital city architecture, and on the experiences from the digital city of Trikala (Greece), in order to present how digital city impacts local attitudes regarding e-Government. Moreover, the chapter will attempt to evaluate digital city’s progress and its performance concerning citizen contacts to e-Government.
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Since the early 90s different digital cities were implemented all over the world (Table 1). The first case was the America-On-Line cities (Wang and Wu, 2001), where web environments offered digital transactions and chatting options. America-On-Line simulated a city via grouping services according to civilian logic. The digital city of Kyoto (Japan) (Ishida, 2002; Ishida, Aurigiri & Yasuoka, 2001) and the digital city of Amsterdam (Lieshout, 2001) were web environments simulating the city and its local life (streets, enterprises, malls etc.). This version of the digital city offered virtual meeting rooms for specific common interests, inviting citizens to participate. These web approaches were evolved to virtual reality environments (Van den Besselaar & Beckers, 1998) operating beyond the physical boundaries of a city.

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