Computing Community Consortium Blog

The goal of the Computing Community Consortium (CCC) is to catalyze the computing research community to debate longer range, more audacious research challenges; to build consensus around research visions; to evolve the most promising visions toward clearly defined initiatives; and to work with the funding organizations to move challenges and visions toward funding initiatives. The purpose of this blog is to provide a more immediate, online mechanism for dissemination of visioning concepts and community discussion/debate about them.


City-Scale Intelligent Systems and Platforms

July 27th, 2017 / in CCC, research horizons, Research News / by Helen Wright

Contributions to this post were provided by Klara Nahrstedt. 

Roughly 12% of the global population today lives in 28 megacities, and at least 40 megacities are projected by 2030. Cost-effective management and sustainability of these growing urban areas will be one of the most critical challenges to our society, motivating the concept of science- and data-driven urban design, retrofit, and operation—that is, “Smart Cities”.

Recently, the Computing Community Consortium (CCC) in collaboration with the Electrical and Computer Engineering Department Heads Association (ECEDHA) released white papers describing a collective research agenda for intelligent infrastructure. Today, we highlight the final paper from the series called City-Scale Intelligent Systems and Platforms.

A Smart City will require intelligent infrastructure that provides: 1) measurement of system performance and impact on other systems; 2) connectivity enabling data exchange and cooperative operation among intelligent objects; 3) access to data in order to support innovation in information provision and decision support technologies and services for individuals, businesses, organizations, and city service providers; 4) controls ensuring service integrity, safe autonomous operation, and protection of privacy while empowering individuals and organizations to safely share data as well as physical assets; and 5) communication mechanisms to provide real-time information not only through personal devices but also through integration into physical assets such as street signs.

Investments from federal agencies will be critical to engage academic researchers in collaboration with cities and private companies and to support major pilot infrastructures as well as open, community-driven efforts to test, refine, and adopt common platforms.

Some of the recommendations from the paper include:

  • Facilitate the creation of an open infrastructure to enable sharing of datasets for researchers to use, test, and compare new ideas and methodologies.
  • Research into re-purposing, retrofitting, optimization, inter-dependability, and better control of existing infrastructures, allowing seamless inclusion of new measurement, data analysis, and autonomous control systems.
  • Research needed to develop data-driven resource allocation mechanisms, and control and audit systems that support privacy and security.
  • Move beyond static optimization and towards effective and tractable dynamic optimization under uncertainties.
  • Research in distributed/massively parallel algorithmic and information architectures, which can result in computation and information exchange tractability.

Please read the paper for additional recommendations on City-Scale Intelligent Systems and Platforms.

See all the previously highlighted Intelligent Infrastructure papers on the CCC Blog!

City-Scale Intelligent Systems and Platforms