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In the face of COVID-19, the smart city movement has increasingly gained momentum. Drones, autonomous freight, and AI-based remote temperature sensing are among some of the new technologies that companies have partnered with cities to deploy in recent months. Smart city advocates insist that the crisis provides a key opportunity to digitally transform urban spaces for good. As the Silicon Valley “innovation firm” Strategy of Things notes, “The adoption of innovative smart city technologies such as the Internet of Things, artificial intelligence, and 5G, offers the potential for cities to respond to the pandemic more effectively and will be crucial in both curbing the spread of the virus and restarting our economy.”

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