Last updated: Meet Maria, a Future City citizen

Meet Maria, a Future City citizen


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I arrived in a Future City as a teenager. My family came from the countryside, and though we had many challenges to face, we were fortunate that we moved to a socially inclusive and sharing city, or it would have been easy for us to be left behind.

My parents had no computer skills to get online and apply for jobs, and little knowledge of how city services worked. Our Future City had determined that all of their citizens should lead a fair and good life, so through the collaborative society that exists here, my parents were able to find work in the gig economy, and none of us were made to feel like outsiders.

In fact, my parents felt valuable because they were able to make use of the city’s Citizen Engagement platform. This supported a local labor market program which trained and certified them utilizing the employment experience they had gained in our home village, enabling them to earn a living wage to support the family and be part of the broader circular economy.

When it came to applying for benefits or making arrangements for my schooling, the digital citizen wallet was invaluable. My parents entered their details once, and their data was securely stored in the blockchain, easily accessed to complete any government transaction without any problems.

We have been in our Future City for a few years now, and my family are well-established – so much so that they want to help the community in the countryside and other countries that are facing tough challenges, like access to good health and sanitation. There are programs set up to enable this, and one of these, Welthungerhilfe, assists with everything from disaster relief to development projects. My parents are volunteering with this organization.

I am now a student at the Future City University. This is funded through an innovative public private partnership, aimed at improving educational opportunities for young people like myself, so we can be part of the future workforce and play a valuable role in the economy of our city.

My concentration is in ICT, and I have been part of an innovation team that is using blockchain for disaster relief. This focuses on trying to solve the lack of transparency that often occurs between different relief parties who react when disaster strikes. Blockchain technology allows the central systems of the different relief mission participants, such as the UN, national humanitarian aid, or NGOs to connect via a distributed network.

Blockchain also easily creates an independent system of record that can result in much faster and more effective help where people really need it, like we did before we came to our Future City.

When you have been a stranger in a new city, and you have benefited from the kind of inclusivity that makes you feel part of a fair society with great prospects, you do want to contribute something in return. My family strives to participate in our community and in our Future City by giving back some of the benefits that assisted us. I guess this is what the circular economy is all about!

Future Cities: Inclusive and sharing

Future inclusive cities will catalyze civic participation, public innovation, and a collaborative economy. They will be fair and just, where people of all nationalities, creed, color, and backgrounds are valued and can contribute positively to society and all can live in dignity and prosperity.

Future Cities will use data-driven policies and regulations to make the sharing economy work for all citizens and businesses, and will lead the way to the circular economy. They will ensure a sustainable economy where waste is eliminated and where assets and natural resources are properly maintained, optimized, and preserved.

As Future Cites transform and grown, they will do so in an equitable manner to avoid and lessen gentrification, while preserving the unique fabric of communities. Cities will ensure that development will minimize the displacement of residents, preserve affordability, and enable local business to grow and prosper.

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