Log in

Create a user profile using your existing professional profile on LinkedIn, Academia, or ResearchGate.

Alternatively, register a username and password to start an account.

By creating an account you will be able to contribute articles, engage in discussion groups, network with fellow professionals and businesses, and receive interest-related alerts.

Forgot Password

Please enter your email address below and you will receive a temporary link to re-activate your account

Explaining the use and non-use of smart cities services in Johannesburg

Residents' perspectives

Article image

Judy Backhouse, Malefa Topo

09 November 2015

National Research Foundation


Lucille Tetley-Brown

Conference paper


South Africa

One of the aims of the development of smart city initiatives is to provide electronic services that address residents’ information needs. Local governments in South Africa have realised that e-government can improve service delivery. There are currently government e-services that are designed to meet residents’ information needs and transform Johannesburg into a smart city. However, local governments face the challenge of deficiencies in the use of government e-services. In order to ensure that all residents benefit from smart city services there is a need to understand the use and non-use of these services.


The paper reports preliminary results of the research being done in Johannesburg to understand what makes people use or not use smart city services. In this context, smart city services refer to government e-services and city Wi-Fi. The research is addressed from an interpretive perspective employing qualitative methods. The theoretical framework of government website utilization developed by Wang (2014) is used as a theoretical grounding.


Data was collected through in-depth semi-structured face-to-face interviews with open-ended questions and analysed by use of open and closed coding techniques. At the time of writing the paper, nine interviews were concluded. The results show that value, effectiveness, user needs, alternative sources, access, awareness, and trust significantly influence residents’ decisions to use or not use smart city services. The study confirms and extends Wang’s (2014) theoretical framework to make it applicable in other contexts. These results are significant to both theory and practice.


Abstract based directly on original source. Back to the SmartCity.ZA collection.


Website References

Built environment

Community facilities and services

Data analysis

Digital access



Local government

Public services

Residential preferences

Smart Cities

Smart infrastructure

Smart technologies

Social facilities

South Africa


View Contributors:


No comments available