Smart Cities Activator Plan

Thu, 2019-05-30 07:11 -- Jon DeKeles

Activator Plan: Find who needs to be at the table

Mapping the ecosystem. Activator Plan also has tools for discovering and mapping the stakeholder ecosystem. Many smart city projects suffer because the city does not realize the full range of stakeholders and has not thought through the many legal, financial, and technical touch points.

 "From our perspective, smart cities are first and foremost about stakeholder alignment. That sounds easy and it sounds obvious, but it's extremely difficult at city scale to get large, complex organizations to define and then agree to pursue collective objectives that we can only do together, and to keep them focused on that over quarters and years." George Karayannis, Executive Director, Panasonic CityNow Smart Districts.

Using Activator Plan, cities can:

  • map their stakeholders
  • understand their roles
  • capture their legal, financial, and technical relationships
  • visualize the entire ecosystem with the ability to drill down to the details.

Activator Plan: Collaboratively plan projects

Activator Plan contains more than two-dozen modules for such things as structuring business models, creating use cases, and mapping the customer journey. These tools are collaborative in the same fashion as Google Docs – any change made anywhere is seen instantly by everybody else on their own computers. 

Here is a partial list of Plan modules:


  • Ecosystem modeler
  • Stakeholder roles
  • Stakeholder perspectives

Business planning

  • Business model canvas
  • Platform model canvas
  • Lean canvas
  • SWOT canvas
  • Project success canvas
  • Drivers
  • Risks


  • Kanban
  • Lessons learned


  • Problem statements
  • Overall value
  • Stakeholder roles
  • Stakeholders perspective
  • Use case diagram
  • User stories
  • Product/service offering

Project Templates - Another powerful capability comes in the form of project templates. A template is a step-by-step workflow. Each step can be linked to the knowledge resources needed at that stage. Templates provide the what-to and when-to. Knowledge resources provide the how-to. Activator comes with a small but growing collection of templates. The Council typically helps cities build their first starter templates as part of its configuration services. As the community grows, Activator will feature templates created by outside organizations, including standards bodies, government agencies, associations, non-profits, sustainability groups, consulting firms, and other cities.