Community Engagement as a Tool to help deliver Smart City Innovation: A Case Study of Nottingham, United Kingdom.




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Peer reviewed



Cities are complex urban conurbations and facing many challenges. The majority of the world’s population now live in cities and consume 80 % of the resources. ‘Smart City’ innovation is emerging as a major response to the challenges cities are facing. Much of the focus remains on technological interventions, but technology alone may not be sufficient to reach smart and sustainable city goals. Cities are made up of people who have influence and are therefore key stakeholders in the development of smart city innovation and cannot be ignored. This paper aims to explore community engagement in Nottingham to help deliver smart city innovation and the way Nottingham City Council is engaging local communities in its smart projects. The paper analyses the community engagement strategy of Nottingham developed as part of the EU funded smart city project, REMOURBAN (REgeneration MOdel for accelerating the smart URBAN transformation). The main drivers and barriers to effective community engagement are identified in the smart city context. This exploratory study adopted a case study strategy and qualitative research methods. The data was collected through thirteen semi-structured interviews with middle and senior managers in Nottingham City Council and other stakeholder organisations in the city and a focus group of five community leaders from three local community groups. The content analysis of the REMOURBAN documents related to citizen engagement and the council’s energy strategies and policies was carried out. The key results are discussed with recommendations to nurture effective community engagement as a smart city tool and conclusions are drawn.



Smart cities, Community engagement, Community energy


Mazhar, M., Kaveh, B., Sarshar, M., Bull R., and Fayez, R. (2017) Community Engagement as a Tool to help deliver Smart City Innovation: A Case Study of Nottingham, United Kingdom. ECEEE Summer Study Conference Proceedings 2017. pp. 807-820


Research Institute

Institute of Energy and Sustainable Development (IESD)