- The Smart Cities Council has developed a new collaborative online tool for cities to mitigate their response to the new coronavirus (COVID-19).
- The platform, "Activator - COVID-19 Mitigation Roadmap," can help city leaders or task forces visualize their response plan and collaborate remotely.
- The tool is a framework that gathers official resources in one place; allows team members to collaborate in real-time; publishes the information in the format best suited for the specific audience (i.e. political leaders, city managers, residents, etc.); and allows stakeholders to view how other cities are handling the response.
The free tool is designed to convert knowledge to action, as cities to take a step back to visualize and distill the information on-hand for COVID-19 mitigation, Smart Cities Council Managing Director Philip Bane told Smart Cities Dive.
"This is a marathon, not a sprint," he said.
One of the first things cities can do with the solution is build a list of community stakeholders to aid response. Those participants can include hospitals, medical officers, faith-based nonprofits, insurance companies, banks, nursing homes and more. "The whole idea is to help the city figure out who needs to be at the table," he said.
Cities can also use the tool to input information include funding, "lessons learned" and "risks to plan for."
The Activator is among a range of technology solutions being used by cities to mitigate the effects of COVID-19.
In China, drones equipped with loudspeakers and cameras were used to communicate with residents about rules and government-mandated precautions. The Chinese government even used facial recognition technology to keep track of any quarantine violators and issue warnings.
While many of those tactics might not be used in the U.S., less invasive tactics can be deployed. Analytics technology, for example, can help through partnerships with health-centric companies Metabiota and BlutDot, or mapping companies SAS and Esri. Mapping was particularly helpful to fight Ebola and can be beneficial for health officials to categorize an outbreak.
To keep up with all of our coverage on how the new coronavirus is impacting U.S. cities, visit our daily tracker.