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Public Participation in the making of Smart cities in India: Case of Nagpur Smart City

Raut, Shantanu Ashok (2024)
Public Participation in the making of Smart cities in India: Case of Nagpur Smart City.
Technische Universität Darmstadt
doi: 10.26083/tuprints-00026688
Master Thesis, Primary publication, Publisher's Version

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Item Type: Master Thesis
Type of entry: Primary publication
Title: Public Participation in the making of Smart cities in India: Case of Nagpur Smart City
Language: English
Referees: Čamprag, Prof. Dr. Nebojša
Date: 23 February 2024
Place of Publication: Darmstadt
Collation: 92 Seiten
Date of oral examination: 13 March 2023
DOI: 10.26083/tuprints-00026688

The Indian smart city mission aims to transform one hundred selected cities into smart cities. The mission guidelines emphasize the importance of equal public participation and considering their aspirations while formulating the policies and implementing the projects under the smart city agenda at the local level. In this context, the research aims to understand public participation in making smart cities in India with the case of Nagpur smart city. Furthermore, developed a qualitative framework to analyze the state of public participation in Smart Cities in India. Although the city of Nagpur was selected because the smart city proposal and the public participation process while conceptualizing the smart city proposal is appreciated by GoI., it remains one of the least researched case studies.

The research is qualitative and utilizes a literature review, semi-structured interview and a case study approach as research methods. The main findings of the research indicate that public participation in Nagpur smart city was implemented by a top-down, controlled approach and prioritizes a one-way mode of communication. Nagpur smart city heavily relied on media and social media platforms to collect public consent for the smart city proposal to make the city smart; however, while doing so, it ignored the vulnerable factors of the society, prioritizing one-way digital communication. Moreover, the process of public participation prioritizes certain affluent classes of inhabitants, suppressing the voice of the marginalized in society. As a result, Nagpur city smart missed the opportunities to co-create and co-produce with the inhabitants. It missed a chance to get informed opinions from the inhabitant, which would have contributed to making an informed decision while formulating the smart city concept for Nagpur.

This research highlighted the need for a democratic, inclusive resident engagement mechanism and capacity development to participate effectively. The Nagpur smart city case demonstrates how, even in supposedly democratic and inclusive initiatives, ‘assumed’ unfitting voices are excluded and controlled in practice by the city governing authorities and policymakers who are supposed to act as guardians. Suppose the urban authorities fail to inculcate democratic values in urban development initiatives, which should be meant to manage urban areas better. Smart cities will probably continue to stand for neoliberal technocracy without democratic reform.

Uncontrolled Keywords: Public participation, smart city, inclusiveness, democracy, capacity building
Status: Publisher's Version
URN: urn:nbn:de:tuda-tuprints-266888
Classification DDC: 700 Arts and recreation > 720 Architecture
Divisions: 15 Department of Architecture > Fachgruppe E: Stadtplanung
15 Department of Architecture > Fachgruppe E: Stadtplanung > Mundus Urbano
Date Deposited: 23 Feb 2024 13:07
Last Modified: 27 Feb 2024 13:52
URI: https://tuprints.ulb.tu-darmstadt.de/id/eprint/26688
PPN: 515804657
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