December 14, 2017

City Digital and the Smart Chicago Collaborative today announced that they have merged to become City Tech Collaborative. City Tech transforms cities into testbeds for new technology. To increase the odds of technology adoption and impact, City Tech involves residents in the design and delivery of new solutions. City Tech executes projects with funders as well as academics, community groups and startups.

“The City Tech model hinges on the inclusion of diverse players to collectively frame a problem and solution,” said City Tech Executive Director Brenna Berman. “City Tech brings partners and people into all stages of technology development, from problem identification through piloting and plans for scaling.”

City Tech builds on the commitment and partnership of the John D. and Catherine T. MacArthur Foundation, the Chicago Community Trust, the City of Chicago and a growing roster of corporations, such as Microsoft and Mastercard. City Tech members and funders recognize the potential for cities to serve as places where technology fuels opportunity, inclusion, engagement and innovation.

“Bringing together City Digital and the Smart Chicago Collaborative will help ensure that technology solutions intended to improve the city as a whole reflect the perspectives and needs of Chicago’s diverse residents,” said Julia Stasch, President of the John D. and Catherine T. MacArthur Foundation.

City Digital was launched in 2015 to leverage Chicago’s commitment to bring essential services and infrastructure into the modern era. It has launched 12 projects with more than 30 organizations and brought two products to market. One maps underground infrastructure to prevent construction accidents. The other manages green infrastructure that prevents stormwater flooding.

Smart Chicago was formed in 2010 to increase people’s access to the Internet and digital tools. Smart Chicago also has used data to create meaningful tools for Chicago residents, such as Foodborne Chicago, which connects people who complain about food poisoning on Twitter to local health officials, and the Chicago Health Atlas, a digital directory of public health services and citywide health trends.

City Tech is based at UI LABS, a tech organization driving the digital future of manufacturing and cities. It is located on Goose Island near downtown Chicago.

About City Tech
City Tech transforms cities into testbeds for new ideas. With partners and people, we remake essential services and infrastructure, from skills to skyscrapers. We then prepare these solutions for other cities, thus increasing the world’s odds of solving big, urban problems. We are currently easing subway congestion during large events; creating a digital map of Chicago underground; and launching a digital directory of public health services in Chicago.

Media contact:
Katie Olson, katie.olson@uilabs.org, +1 414-308-8678