Airbnb Launches City Portal: A First-of-its-Kind Resource for Governments

#sp3637 #civiengagement #HealthandSafety

Article Summary:

Airbnb teamed up with governments and tourism organizations to add the City portal for locally-specific data. The dashboard includes local and global insights into the short-term rental market characteristics, which helps governments and tourism organizations to take advantage of the information. information is currently available for certain big cities.

  1. local information(restaurants, entertainment, etc.) is available to travelers in one location
  2. Tourism organizations can see where the guests are coming from and adjust their marketing accordingly
  3. Governments can develop fair short-term rental policies and regulations and allocate appropriate taxes
  4. Central location for resources such as neighborhood support hotline and where law enforcement supports may be needed
  5. Policing the policies is easier if officials have questions or receive complaints as the information is all in one place


  1. Local governments
  2. Tourism organizations
  3. Travelers
  4. Local businesses and communities


Since this portal has already been established for larger cities and hot vacation spots, an initiative to expand to smaller towns and communities will benefit the local communities.

  1. Establish a group within Airbnb, or government funded team, to research and prepare a list of isolated vacation locations that could be added to the existing hot vacation spots.
  2. Reach out to local businesses and potential available rental properties to expand the database
  3. Market these isolated new locations with a campaign slogan “Spread-out America” to ease back into normality post COVID19 pandemic.




Electrifying Bus Fleets in Charlotte, NC – (Pilot Program)

  1. Public-private partnership between Duke Energy and Charlottes Area Transit System(CATS) will pilot a program to utilize 18 battery operated bus vehicles in the city and surrounding areas. Program to begin in early 2022 and span over 12-18 months
  2. Pilot program is supported by Bloomberg Philanthropies American Cities Climate Challenge, and FTA(Federal Transit Administration) and CATS Capital Investment Program will fund the pilot program.
  3. Some challenges as CATS collects and assesses the data are:
    1. high upfront cost
    2. performance of the busses for long and frequent routes
    3. finding/testing manufacturers that best suite city’s weather, topography and needs


  1. Charlottes Area Transit System(CATS)
  2. Duke Energy – subsidiary of eTransEnergy
  3. Residents of Charlotte, NC and surrounding areas
  4. Federal Transit Administration(FTA)

Three steps to deploy the technology (assuming funding is in place)

  1. Work with manufacturers that are interested in participating in the program and bus selection
  2. Identify charging needs and potential charging stations and associated infrastructure to support the stations, as buses will draw more energy than the electric cars
  3. Identify bus routes and areas that the program will serve based on above

Big data (Cycle Atlanta) to anticipate development in civic engagement, not just remedy break-downs.


1) Many app services are reflexive and passive neither allowing the individual nor the project to achieve full realization, whereas Cycle Atlanta makes normative claims of what is happening and what is needed proactively.

2) “The Right Way to Make Cities Smart” Cycle Atlanta.

  • Enables cyclists to record their ride data—where they’ve gone, why they went there, what kind of cyclist they are—in an effort to collect more knowledge about cycling in the city.
  • Aggregates information with the explicit goal of helping the Atlanta cycling community advocate for particular infrastructural reforms.
  • Collects data to inform planners where bike facilities should be built.

3) Stakeholders include tax payers, city planning, IT data servers, bicycle riders, city parks, private construction contractors, DOT, Business Improvement Districts.

4) Step 1) Hire tech company to install algorithms, servers, and start-up training to manage incoming date.

Step 2) Establish boundaries of inclusion and exclusion for initial trial period.

Step 3) Reach out to community boards in affected areas to discover their willingness to incorporate potential’s data’s findings.

Step 4) Go live, and see what the users are actually experiencing!

Revolutionizing Civic Engagement through Smart Apps


1) How to get engage citizens in real time civic problems

2) Summary

Included in this article are 5 platforms to solicit perspectives from the citizen of a particular area. They include the Ivote app, WePower App, Goodnet  and give2gether.  There is much more to learn about these apps and how they might link to Twitter and Facebook but they provide a great way to get real time connected information about the priorities and concerns of CItizens.


Civic leaders, Citizens, Nonprofits

4) Deployment

Review the specific needs of the survey or determine what type of feedback would best enable an agenda to move forward. Pick the most appropriate app and communicate its availability to the citizens. Open the voting period and compile real time results.

Great-looking outfit made completely from garbage


technology: recycled garbage

Brand: Adidas, Nike, G-Star

Title: It’s now possible to get a great-looking outfit made completely from garbage

Website name: Quartz


  1. Popular brands are popularizing the eco-friendly frontier by using garbage to create fashion
  2. Adidas’s collaboration with environmental group Parley for the Oceans made the above picture with ocean debris
  3. G-Star used recycled plastic to make denim with no visually discernible difference between real denim and recycled plastic denim

Organizational stakeholders: United Nations, fashion retailers, Parley for the Oceans, NGOs, consumers, marketers

3 steps

  1. Have celebrities/models wear garbage-made clothing to set the trend
  2. Use intelligent PR and marketing firms to further popularize this trend using viral campaigns and instagram
  3. Have all the retailers begin using garbage for clothes instead of regular materials

A Shazam-like App for plant identification to raise awareness about urban biodiversity

1) New Yorkers lack of information and awareness about their city’s plant species and scientists need help with plant location & identification to measure biodiversity loss.

2) The article :

  • LeafSnap is a mobile app, developed by Columbia University, the University of Maryland, and the Smithsonian Institution, that identifies trees species from a photograph of its leaves and provides information about its fruits, flowers, seeds and growing conditions
  • The app works with a snapshot modeled on a face-identification system like a Shazam for plants and delivers a service similar to a Monument Tracker for plants
  • Not only does the app provide information to the photographer-resident about his local green assets but it also shares the picture and location of the plant with other users and scientists that can use this data to advance their research on biodiversity
  • Constrains: the system requires photo shooting the leaf on a white piece of paper and the database only provides information about Northeast US, New York City and Washington DC’s species of trees.

3) The stakeholders that will need to use the technology found are:

  • Columbia University that can partner with NYC to promote and further develop the app
  • The NYC Department of Parks and Recreation to promote the app on their website and make it available to residents
  • All residents that will use the app to play or develop their knowledge
  • The NYC Department of Education can promote the app to middle schools and biology teachers

4) I work for one of the app developers, Columbia University

  • Build a partnership with the NYC City Parks and Garden for them to
    • promote “LeafSnap; the number one App that reconnects New Yorkers with their environment” on their website during the summer when reaches a high frequentation
    • make LeafSnap available to download
    • and integrate the LeafSnap database in the NYC Parks system
  • Measure app success through figures about the total number of downloaders during the first summer
  • Use initial success to source funding and develop a GIS for mapping tree species in NYC and making it available to the public
  • In the long-term, develop FlowerSnap, InsectsSnap and databases for other cities in the US