Smart cities, epistemic communities, advocacy coalitions and the `last mile' problem

Rob Kitchin 1 , Claudio Coletta 1 , Leighton Evans 2 , Liam Heaphy 1  and Darach MacDonncha 1
  • 1 NIRSA, Maynooth University, Iontas Building, W23 F2H6, , Maynooth, Ireland
  • 2 Media and Communications, Swansea University, SA2 8PP, , Wales, Swansea, United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland


We argue that the ideas, ideals and the rapid proliferation of smart city rhetoric and initiatives globally have been facilitated and promoted by three inter-related communities: (i) `urban technocrats'; (ii) a smart cities `epistemic community'; (iii) a wider `advocacy coalition'. We examine their roles and the multiscale formation, and why despite their influence they encounter a `last mile problem'; that is, smart city initiatives are yet to become fully mainstreamed. We illustrate this last mile problem through a discussion of plans to introduce smart lighting in Dublin.

Purchase article
Get instant unlimited access to the article.
Log in
Already have access? Please log in.

Log in with your institution

Journal + Issues

it - Information Technology is a strictly peer-reviewed scientific journal. It is the oldest German journal in the field of information technology. Today, the major aim of it - Information Technology is highlighting issues on ongoing newsworthy areas in information technology and informatics and their application. It aims at presenting the topics with a holistic view.