A city that works is a city you want to be in.
Citywise™ is a conversation. It’s a convener, bringing together urbanists, security experts, public officers and private enterprises to examine how cities operate and how they can be improved. Keeping an eye on both the bigger picture and the finer details is the challenge – and Citywise is our platform for striking this balance. It’s a conversation about how together we can create vibrant, exciting and safe cities that attract and retain residents, companies, and communities alike.
In a city that works elements connect and complement one another – police services, fire departments, housing authorities, universities, schools, hospitals, libraries, parking lots and private enterprises and the citizens themselves. And this is just as true when we consider the safety of a city. Cities are places of interaction, hubs of business and leisure, and a high level of crime (or simply the fear of it) can put the value of urban life in doubt. Citywise considers a huge variety of approaches to ensure safety, both in how we build and how we run our cities and encourages the conversations that are too often not happening. Planners and police chiefs are at odds, businesses and citizens aren’t brought on board, and, because of these silos, the city misses an opportunity. Safety isn’t bound by a single discipline or audience, it’s at its best when many work together.
Photo by tupungato/iStock / Getty Images
The key to urban safety
For Citywise, tools used for public safety must be multipurpose: urban design and an infrastructure of technology can reinforce one another, and partnerships must work on different levels to create an adaptable and robust practice, one that is prepared to react to all inevitabilities. Efficient use of existing infrastructure requires synergies, like using license-plate recognition cameras to redesign roads, make sidewalks safer and ensure trash collection isn’t tardy. High-tech touches don’t necessitate an entire overhaul. It’s about working together to leverage what we have to create resilient communities, ones that acknowledge that stuff happens, good or bad, and are prepared to react and respond accordingly.
Photo by Jupiterimages/PHOTOS.com>> / Getty Images
Sensible surveillance & collaboration
Tools for observation play a key role in enforcement and investigation in many major cities. Cities such as London, New York, Rio de Janeiro and Tokyo are all investing heavily in tools for surveillance, analytics, and response management. And what’s key to their success is finding new efficiencies: to be lean but muscular, these cities have partnered with businesses, hospitals or university campuses to link private security systems into a public network. The goal is not more surveillance, but better surveillance, with a focus on sensible and intelligent data.
Photo by View Stock/View Stock / Getty Images
Technology can give cities the edge
We have the opportunity to produce and collect immense amounts of data about our cities, and increasingly information is becoming central to how we manage them. But this doesn’t mean technology should take a front seat - it’s only one of many considerations. Old school urbanism still matters. A good city is a rich mosaic of dense streets and public places, which results in as much interaction and exchange of ideas as possible. Technology must be integrated, not overbearing. It must be sensible to be meaningful. And, it must be supportive of, and in concert with, good ideas about what kind of city we want to be in. The clever use of technology can help give cities an edge: learning from themselves, and being one step ahead.
About Genetec

Much of what we do at Genetec involves creating connections. Our business over the last two decades has been focused on the creation of innovative networked security platforms. In many ways, modern IP security technology has been the catalyst to enable greater collaborations, allowing us to build viable security solutions for everyone from businesses to communities to cities themselves

Through our work, we have come to understand the inherent benefits and challenges that cities face when implementing a collaborative approach to safety. The need for shared information within a community is the driving force in getting businesses, schools, neighborhood groups, as well as local, state and government departments involved in city security.

We recognize that building such a city isn’t easy and that it demands that we extend beyond current thinking to look at our organizations differently to find ways to work more collaboratively. It also demands that we at Genetec play a role that is larger than our technology. Our focus must be as much on the bigger picture as it is on the finer details. Cities are dynamic, changing places – and we know that to be successful, a city has got to be future-wise. Genetec is there behind the scenes working to help connect the dots to build stronger and more seamlessly run cities.


2280 Alfred-Nobel Blvd.
Suite 400
Montreal, Quebec, Canada
H4S 2A4
Toll Free: 1.866.684.8006
Canada & USA: +1 514.332.4000
Fax: +1 514.332.1692