In "Lake Effect", author Karen Nichols discusses the economic and toxicological impacts of the 1970's big business boon on Great Lakes communities. Many of the communities that once benefited from harboring manufacturing plants on their lakefronts are now saddled with rebuilding local economies with limited resources. Critical municipal services such as Planning & Management, Infrastructure, and Human Resources are faced with the very real challenge of doing more with less.
IBM technologies, such as Decision Optimization, can help these cities become 'smarter' "interconnected systems of systems" by giving them the capabilities to make complex decisions based on data insights from every customer channel. As communities, like Waukegan Illinois, attempt to reinvent themselves through arts and tourism-based endeavors they will require robust, dynamic, decision-making capabilities that sustainably benefit the city as a whole in order to make the transition. See: http://www.ibm.com/smarterplanet/us/en/smarter_cities/overview/
So, here's my challenge: How smart is your city? Let's ask: http://www-935.ibm.com/services/us/gbs/bus/html/ibv-smarter-cities-assessment.html