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Bringing about better government services through the Internet of Things

By Microsoft in Government on June 6, 2016

Filed under Microsoft in Government

The public sector hasn’t traditionally been seen as a hotbed of technological innovation. The needs of our constituents come first, and that means assuring that each of our investments in infrastructure stands the test of time. But sometimes a new wave of technology comes along that simply cannot be ignored. For trailblazers like Daniel Hoffman, Chief Innovation Officer of Montgomery, Maryland U.S.A., the Internet of Things (IoT) is one such shift.

“In Montgomery County, the innovation program has a few different initiatives, some of them are not tech related—related to food or education. We also have some that are internally focused on internal processes like procurement and HR, but then there are some that are very tech driven although we really try to look at the reason for being, the big one being our Internet of Things initiative, called the Thingstitute, which operates real world test beds on subjects that are important to residents.” – Hoffman

Mr. Hoffman’s Thingstitute is already looking into adding IoT sensors to bus stops, farm land, and senior living centers. In the near future, he envisions a county in which bus stops function as traffic monitors and public safety hubs, where farm land monitors and reports on its own weather conditions, and where the elderly and immobile are more connected to the world around themselves.

To make his concept of the future come to fruition, Hoffman is forging partnerships with private enterprise. Microsoft, for example, is the lead partner on Montgomery County’s agriculture initiative.

Daniel Hoffman partners local governments with start-ups
Watch Daniel Hoffman partners local governments with start-upsWatch Daniel Hoffman partners local governments with start-ups

We know many more of you tech innovators exist in the public sector (even if you don’t hold the title of Chief Innovation Officer), and if you’d like to hear more about what the IoT can do for your constituency, check out the rest of our interview with Daniel Hoffman.

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