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The Age of Airbnb: How Cities Adapt to the Sharing Economy

BY Sam Roudman | Monday, June 17 2013

Photo: Sam Howzit

Austin is one of a number of cities coming to grips with how to regulate the growing online market for short-term rentals through sites like Airbnb and HomeAway. While creating these regulations gives cities the opportunity to raise revenue through licensing, it also creates a Gordian knot of competing interests. Here's the path some cities are paving through the obstacles towards a new legal framework for the sharing economy. Read More

Google Fiber Planned for Third City, Signal of New Power for Cities Bargaining for Broadband

BY Nick Judd | Wednesday, April 17 2013

Google has announced that Provo, Utah will become the third city in the U.S. to get Google Fiber, the search company's entry into broadband Internet and TV service. Read More

Three Kickstarter-Inspired, Civically Minded Crowdfunding Sites

BY Miranda Neubauer | Tuesday, July 31 2012

The idea of public-private partnerships to fund projects like parks or public transit has been on the upswing. In New York City, for example, non-profits work with the city to fund programming in three major parks, and a public-private partnership allowed the city to fund the construction of its now-famous High Line park on an old elevated rail spur. A team hoping to pitch the city's Metropolitan Transportation Authority on turning an unused section of its underground subway network into another park raised initial funding on Kickstarter.

That last success, and others like it, have spurred several entrepreneurs to develop Kickstarter-like websites devoted specifically to funding civic projects. They're not the only ones looking online to renegotiate the relationship between cities and citizens — over the past year, a piece of software called ChangeByUs has evolved over time into a platform for cities to help introduce citizens to one another in the hopes that they'll organize around smaller-scale projects — but they're certainly among the most ambitious.

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Chicago CTO Says Senior Municipal Staff are Changing the Way Cities Work

BY Nick Judd | Tuesday, June 28 2011

Chicago at night. Photo: Rhys Asplundh / Flickr Mayors across the United States are tasking senior staffers with changing the way their cities work, Chicago Chief Technology Officer John Tolva said during an interview ... Read More

A Good Story Well Told Is a Powerful Thing: Cities and Social Media Edition

BY Nick Judd | Monday, June 20 2011

Late last month, some folks in Grand Rapids, Mich. — a city of less than 1 million people — used a well-made viral video to completely change the way the world views their city. Theirs was just one of many ... Read More

Trend Watch: Cops and Communities Talk Traffic Data

BY Nancy Scola | Tuesday, May 24 2011

Governing Magazine's Heather Kerrigan reports that cities across the U.S. are finding a useful policing edge in overlaying crime data and traffic safety data. (In broad strokes, crime and traffic incidents tend to happen ... Read More

On 'Cities as Software'

BY Nick Judd | Monday, May 23 2011

Marcus Westbury, the festival organizer who led an effort to reinvigorate the downtown in his native Newcastle, Australia, by filling it with small businesses, art installations and temporary uses, shares an article he ... Read More

In Philly, Making it Harder for Landlords to Hide

BY Nick Judd | Thursday, May 5 2011

Technically Philly describes a hackathon project to find all properties owned by a given landlord by cross-referencing scraped data and city databases: So, say, a small-time property developer wanted neighborhood ... Read More

What's a Smartphone City If You Don't Have a Smartphone?

BY Nancy Scola | Wednesday, April 20 2011

"The Future of Cities, Information, and Inclusion" map from the Institute for the Future. Technology Review's Erica Naone warns that if the future of urban life is data-driven digital one, there's a risk that ... Read More

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New Media Sites in Iran Blur Lines Between Citizen Journo, Professional Journo, & Activist

In 2010, Newsweek declared Iran the “birthplace of citizen journalism.” Iranian bloggers were hailed by Westerners as “brave” for their coverage of the aftermath of the disputed 2009 election. A 40-second video of the death of Neda Agha-Soltan during an anti-government protest won a prestigious George Polk Award, the first anonymously-produced work to be so honored. And then came the 2013 study “Whither Blogestan,” which sought to explain Iran's shrinking blogosphere. Of nearly 25,000 highly active and connected blogs in 2008 and 2009, only 20 percent were still online in September 2013.

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