Smarter Cities Challenge….Back after a brief pause!

Well, the last 7 days have been somewhat hectic for the Smarter Cities Challenge Houston team.  We completed our discovery a week ago today.  Since then we have been formulating and documenting our findings and recommendations.  Easier said than done!

The good news:  As a team we have recognized each others strengths and have each taken on a piece of the puzzle to put in the right place.

The bad news: We are dealing with a complex environment with multiple stakeholders across multiple organizations with various challenges needing to be addressed.

Over the past seven days we have been working as a team to develop a set of manageable recommendations to take to Mayor Parker this Thursday.  We believe we have netted out the challenges and are bringing solid recommendations to the City of Houston.  Once we have reviewed with the public, I will be in a position to share the findings and recommendations via this blog.  Please be on the lookout early next week!

We did get a bit of a break over the weekend.  Mike, Gary, Shinichi and I were about to attend the Houston Texans pre-season football game at Reliant Stadium.  It was an excellent time!  I cannot believe how loud the fans were!  It sounded like the AFC Championship games at Gillette!


Today we had two special guests:  Jon Iwata, Senior Vice President of Marketing and Communications at IBM and Jen Crozier, Vice President of Global Citizenship Initiatives at IBM.  Each of these guests brought their own perspectives to our discussions.

From Jen, we learned that Houston is the 50th Smarter Cities Challenge!  We are a milestone. 

We also got to spend 45 minutes with Jon sharing our findings and recommendations with him.  Jon brought an external perspective to some of our thoughts around branding and awareness.  His feedback helped both confirm the direction of our recommendations and to trim the sails on some of them.

We all appreciate Jon and Jen taking time out of their busy schedules to meet with us.  It was GREATLY appreciated!

The Houston team with Jon Iwata and Jen Crozier


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One response to “Smarter Cities Challenge….Back after a brief pause!

  1. The City of Houston Department of Neighborhoods appreciates all of the effort, energy and expertise of the IBM team! With keen interest, we are looking forward to the team’s report! Evangelina Vigil, Department of Neighborhoods.