Governing the smart city: How Lyon Metropolis managed to steer a heterogeneous ensemble of public and private actors towards sustainable climate-energy policies

Abstract : EDF developed "Linky Smart Meter" as the core material of France Smart Grid policies. The embedded features of Linky were initially aimed at providing the citizen's awareness in view of empowerment and to better manage the daily consumption that corresponds to the actual needs, the possibility to avoid the peak times, and to be informed in real time of dynamic-pricing offers. Linky also plays as terminal for a rapid data stream from households/individual consumption in a real-time basis, creating individual "datafication" processes at the same time (Kitchin, 2014, Lupton, 2016, Mayer-Shonberger, 2017). Its first installation began in 2008-2009 where 270,000 units of Linky were installed in Lyon and Loire. EDF seemed to gain momentum as the leading promotor of France's Smart Grid since Linky is recognized as a smart city element. In 2012, EDF launched Smart Electric Lyon (SEL) project as a research and development program based on Linky under the banner of "Smart City." The SEL was formatted as a collaborative-platform gathering affiliated technology information, and communication (TIC) and electricity-industries companies, to extract the economy added-value upon the massive quantity of data generated by Linky. Since then, Smart Grid program in France are demonstrated as a subcategory of Smart City. While in practice, the cities are the key points supporting Smart Grid innovation (Lecler et al., 2015). Facing the emerging technology penetration such as Smart City, the cities are vulnerable and being at risk on falling on the bottom line among multi-level actors. Numbers of pioneer analysis on Smart Cities were showing pessimistic signs on how cities could resist to the omnipresence of the new actors and new topics that presumably would cannibalize certain traditional city systems. However, through the example of SEL, we singled out that the Lyon Metropolis holds a vital role at orienting the governance of industrial Smart City programs to associate its projects to Lyon's climate-energy plans. We identified a transformation of SEL that was initially designed as a Smart City project to become an instrument of Lyon's energetic transition. Our findings on SEL provide an essential proof to rethink the political role of the city. Under the grand coalition of multi-level actors with heterogeneous political-economy interests, Lyon managed to federate the governance of the smart City ecosystems in accordance to its climate-energy policy plan. We would like to address our argument to the actual critic on the phenomena of Smart City, stating the city as merely as the object of TIC market.
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Yasser Wahyuddin. Governing the smart city: How Lyon Metropolis managed to steer a heterogeneous ensemble of public and private actors towards sustainable climate-energy policies. International conference: Making the smart city safe for citizens The case of smart energy and mobility, Open University of the Netherlands in Heerlen and Business Intelligence & Smart Services (BISS) Institute, Nov 2018, Herleen, Netherlands. ⟨hal-02266044⟩

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