Compassionate Cities

Compassionate Cities is a Council initiative to raise awareness about ways communities can reduce suffering and improve the lives of vulnerable populations through the use of digital technologies already being applied to solve other city challenges. Click here to learn more about the initiative – and scroll down for articles highlighting how technology is helping the homeless, the hungry, the disabled and other people in need around the world.

Hot topics for U.S. mayors: Climate change and income inequality


There's a lot of talk in D.C. about climate change, but at the U.S. Conference of Mayors gathering in Dallas, city leaders acknowledged the reality -- cities are leading the way. Read about climate next steps for cities, a new mayors' task force on income inequality and two cities dubbed most livable.

All aboard for free Wi-Fi: How companies are trying to connect Africa's unconnected


A fascinating story in the Wall Street Journal describes how a Kenya-based telecom is using free Wi-Fi on 3,000 commuter buses to connect Africa's unconnected. It's part of a growing technology push on the continent that includes initiatives from Council Partners Bechtel, Cisco, IBM and MasterCard. Get the details.

Elk Grove's smart idea: Using social media to feed the hungry


Elk Grove, California is using social media to feed the hungry by connecting those in need with those who have excess food that would otherwise go to waste -- farmers, food brokers and restaurants, for example. Elk Grove Mayor Gary Davis calls it 'innovative common sense.' We agree. Learn how the program works.

Connecting the dots between smarter schools and smarter cities


Providence Mayor Angel Taveras is taking on the "30 million word gap" to improve early childhood literacy with specialized "word pedometers." The schools chief in Atlanta expects his district's digital eClass program with IBM will improve his city's competitiveness. Read more about initiatives that are connecting the dots between smart technology, smart schools and smart cities.

Using technology to tackle truancy


In some U.S. cities, school truancy rates may be as high as 30% -- which typically triggers poor academic performance and increased dropout rates. It hurts a student's future prospects, of course, but also takes a toll on the local tax base. Learn how schools in Seattle and Des Moines are addressing the problem and get details on a new online program from a Florida company that aims to re-engage truant youth.