Summer Series: Smart Lessons from New York City, with Dr Amen Ra Mashariki

The Smart Community Podcast

By Zoe Eather

Summer Series: Smart Lessons from New York City, with Dr Amen Ra Mashariki

Sunday, 3 January

Hi #smartcommunity friends! Welcome to 2021, can you believe it? And welcome back to the Summer Series here on the Smart Community Podcast. As you know, we’re taking a little break from new content over the Australian summer holidays, and instead we are sharing the replays of a few of your all time favourite episodes. I’m also walking my talk this week and having a digital break so even though the podcast is still going out and my team will be popping some posts up on the socials, I’ll be giving my brain and body a much needed rest and getting back to nature. This week we’re sharing my interview with Dr. Amen Ra Mashariki, from way back in Episode 89. This episode was right at the beginning of 2019, soon after we’d shifted from Smart City Podcast to the Smart Community podcast.
At the time of recording, Amen was the head of Urban Analytics at global GIS company, Esri, but now he’s Global Director, Data Lab at the World Resources Institute. Amen has a really interesting background, ranging from computer science and being a software engineer at Motorola, to bioinformatics and Cancer Research Analytics, to being a Political Appointee in the Obama Administration and then the Chief Analytics Officer at the Mayors Office in New York City. He shares with us the personal story that sparked his interest in this Smart Community space and the key lessons he’s learned about developing Smart Communities over his career. We talk about what Urban Analytics is and why it’s so valuable in developing Smart thinking, and how Amen works with cities and operational officials in the areas of data science, analytics and location intelligence. Amen tells us about his visit to Australia to meet with some of those operational officials, as well as an interesting case study where data and analytics are being used to prevent housing discrimination in NYC. We discuss why Integrating for the sake of integrating almost never works and what to do instead, and the emerging trends of sensors, drones and blockchain being used in cities by cities. We finish our chat talking about the growing international trend of Civic Tech Engagement and Amen tells us how he sees the role of a Smart Resident in a Smart Community.
We’ll be sure to get Amen back on the show in the future for a full update about what he’s been up to and also how our thinking has progressed since this conversation. But in the meantime, we hope you enjoy listening to this episode as much as we enjoyed making it!
Find the full show notes at: www.mysmart.community
Connect with Amen on Twitter @amashariki
Connect with me via email: hello@mysmart.community
Connect with My Smart Community via LinkedIn or Twitter and watch on YouTube
The Smart Community Podcast is produced by Perk Digital.
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