A feedback loop model to facilitate communication between citizens and local government in Buffalo City
An increasing number of people move to cities in search of better opportunities for themselves and their families. This movement makes it difficult for the local government to understand citizens’ needs fully, particularly pertaining to public safety matters. Thus, in the city of East London where this issue is prevalent, a smart city project was introduced to help alleviate these concerns. During the first phase of the Public Safety Smart City (PSSC) project, it was identified that there is a need for a feedback loop to facilitate the effective communication of public safety issues between citizens and local government. Part of the problem is that local government is reacting to these public safety issues rather than being proactive. The study followed an interpretivism paradigm and the research methodology employed is the qualitative approach in order to gain a deeper understanding of the issues involved. Semi-structured interviews were conducted with eleven East London citizens and four managers from the Department of Public Safety from the Buffalo City Municipality in order to gain further insights. It was ascertained that the lack of feedback concerning public safety issues between citizens and local government leads to citizens’ dissatisfaction. Based on the De Fleur model of communication, the paper concludes that the introduction of an Information and Communication Technology (ICT) enabled feedback loop between citizens and local government can help to reduce these concerns.
Gopeni, Amanda; Wayi, Ntombovuyo; and Flowerday, Stephen, "A feedback loop model to facilitate communication between citizens and local government in Buffalo City" (2016). CONF-IRM 2016 Proceedings. 73.