Government organisations around the world are already benefiting from the Internet of Things, according to a study by Cisco and Cicero Group.
After studying 40 public sector projects in 20 countries, the networking firm's consulting group identified 10 ways that government bodies are capturing value from the Internet of Things (also known as the Internet of Everything, or IoE).
Cisco claims IoE is the next wave of the internet and that it could deliver $4.6 trillion (£2.7 trillion) to the public sector over the next decade. It describes the trend as an explosion of connectivity across people, process, data and things.
After looking at the 40 government IoE projects, Cisco concluded that the public sector is rivalling the best private sector firms.
The study highlighted that city authorities are particularly well placed to improve the quality of citizen's lives through IoE because they provide (or source) many of the services upon which citizens rely on, including transportation, law enforcement, education, water and internet connectivity.
In the study, Cisco points to Amsterdam in the Netherlands as a good example of a city embracing IoE, highlighting that there are 47 IoE projects in operation there, including smart energy grid systems, street lighting, parking applications, building management and public wi-fi. Several of the projects span multiple city departments and private sector stakeholders.
Another insight derived from the study is that IoE solutions need to address issues relating to "people and process, not just data and things".
People issues include getting employees to embrace new roles and responsibilities and encouring managers to train and recruit staff in order to obtain the right skills.
Cisco believes Hamburg Port Authority in Germany, responsible for deploying infrastructure projects across the port, is a good example of a public sector jurisdiction that has developed a strategy to extend its IT architecture, revamp its business processes and scale its operations with technology underpinned by IoE.
Now, when a ship comes into the harbour, HPA's systems indicate that it is approaching, allowing the organisation to get real-time information on things like who is sailing the ship and who the cargo handlers are.
HPA CIO Sebastian Saxe said: "If you try to approach this type of model and you leave out processes and people, you are going to be left with half-truths, or an incomplete solution."
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