What is the Smart Cities Challenge?

    The Smart Cities Challenge is a pan-Canadian competition open to communities of all sizes, including municipalities, regional administrations and Aboriginal communities (First Nations, Métis and Inuit). The Challenge is aimed at encouraging communities to adopt smart-city approaches to improving the quality of life of their residents through innovation and the use of data and connected technologies. The application deadline for submissions is April 24, 2018. Montréal’s municipal administration could win up to $50 million as part of the competition.

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    What is a smart city?

    A smart city is one that uses new information technologies and data to effectively meet urban challenges and improve its citizens’ quality of life. The related success factors are based on transparent and collaborative governance, central to which is citizen participation.

    What does “open data” mean?

    Open data are non-nominal, copyright-free raw data produced or collected by a public or private organization, and available to citizens via the Internet. (OQLF). 

    What is Big Data?

    The term denotes a large volume of data. In general, Big Data is defined by the “3V” characteristics specific to it: velocity, volume and variety. The volume of data to process must be sufficiently large, the data set, whether structured or not, must be highly varied, and the data collection and sharing must be done at a relatively high velocity. (Source: Verteego)


    What is connected technology?

    Connected technologies refer to the Internet of Things and connected objects. Connected technology is spoken of when objects or infrastructures are connected and communicate through the use of technology. For example, gaining access to a bus schedule in real time is made possible thanks to connected technologies that link the GPS aboard the bus with a scheduling management system and your smart phone.

    What is citizen participation and participative democracy?

    Participative democracy is aimed at achieving the highest possible level of citizen participation in the public policy decision-making process.


    Citizen participation can take many forms, including consultations during which citizens are invited to express their opinions on various subjects. It can also take the form of co-creation exercises during which participants are invited to work together to come up with solutions or projects.