White Papers

White Papers Under Review

Below please find a list of white papers which are open for public comment. In order to provide a public comment, please log in in the top right hand corner of the screen, click on the white paper of your choice, and provide your feedback there. 

  • No white papers are available for review at this time

If you would like to get involved in any of the white papers listed, or have a new white paper working group you would like to establish, please contact IEEE Smart Cities Program Manager, Phyllis Caputo at p.caputo@ieee.org.

Finalized white papers will be placed in the IEEE Smart Cities Resource Center.

Student Grant Publications 

In 2014, the IEEE Smart Cities Initiative agreed to support students as part of the "Student Grant" program .  The papers have been developed the students with assistance from their advisors are being made available.   Click on the image to download the pdf.


2019 10 14 SCWhitePaper LivingLab

Living Lab - An innovative approach to healthcare (October 2019)

Matteo Zanetti, Mariolino De Cecco Giandomenico Nollo - University of Trento, Italy


Nowadays, healthcare systems are facing major challenges. Demographic and disease changes are causing an increasing healthcare demand. Moreover, healthcare systems have to consider financial realities, i.e. limited resources, cost reduction and new values based models. Citizens are more aware and informed and we are witnessing to an increase of their expectations in term of healthcare. They want to participate in the decision processes that regard their health. They also ask for a real-time support and an online access to their information. On this basis, new regulations and reforms are needed. In particular, investments are needed to prevent future costs provoked by an increasing demand of hospitalizations. The healthcare delivery has also to be rethought. In this paper, we try to highlight how the concepts of design thinking, participatory design and living lab can help to face these challenges in the healthcare field. 

2019 10 14 SCWhitePaper MixedReality

Mixed Reality for Smart Health (October 2019)

Matteo Zanetti, Mariolino De Cecco Giandomenico Nollo - University of Trento, Italy


The goal of this white paper is to give a brief overview of the current trends and possible applications in the field of Mixed Reality (MR) for smart healthcare applications in rehabilitative medicine. One of the main challenges is the development of innovative clinical models supported by MR services for the treatment of disability and an increase of autonomy in an aging society. This results in the need to identify proper sensing technologies able to empower the therapist clinical evaluation embeddable in the same framework. In this context, the technologies developed in the context of Industry 4.0 are playing an important role and analysis is necessary regarding the impact of these technologies on the existing clinical protocols of rehabilitative medicine.

2019 05 SC WhitePaper Smart Lighting

The Role of Smart Lighting in Smart Grid in the Context of Smart Cities (May 2019)

Parian Golchin, Department of Industrial Engineering - DII - University of Trento, Italy


Smart lighting is one of the key needs of everyday life for citizens. On the one hand, the presence of light is critical to provide security and safety. On the other hand, excessive usage of electrical energy influences greenhouse gasses increase. This white paper explores the importance of smart lighting in the context of smart cities. In particular, the importance of smart energy management of lighting and the choice of right technologies are discussed. Some possible technology solutions are presented and their performance are analyzed. 


2019 05 SC WhitePaper Raise Energy Awareness

Raise Energy Awareness to Drive A Sustainable Energy Transition in Household (May 2019)

Matteo Nardello, Department of Industrial Engineering, DII, University of Trento, Italy

A sustainable energy transition means substantial changes in technology, but also a change in behavior and policies, thus requiring the engagement of both the engineering and the social science communities. In order to achieve the EU 20% reduction on primary energy consumption target by 2020, a change in consumer behavior and energy consumption practices is needed. Providing smart meters and technology for feedback about energy consumption have been considered strategic in current energy policies, as part of the battle against climate change. However, feedback alone does not always lead to energy savings. Beyond information on their own consumption and generic advices, people usually still need more specific guidance about how to change their behavior in an effective and sustainable way. Energy demand is mostly influenced by end user choices and behaviors, making the effectiveness of the adoption of new technologies not effective as expected.

This article discusses how technology and electricity consumption feedback alone may not be sufficient to drive a sustainable energy transition. The need of taking into consideration also the socio-economic aspect to understand what motivates consumers’ energy consumption is outlined, presenting some ideas to inspire consumers to act beyond their only personal interest and to engage in a transition to a more sustainable-energy usage.

2019 05 SCWhitePaper Blockchain

Boosting the Development of Smart Cities with the Blockchain (May 2019)

Lorenzo Ghiro - Department of Information Engineering and Computer Science (DISI) - University of Trento Trento, Italy

Urbanization is taking place worldwide and fast, so much that 66% of the world population is predicted to live in cities in 2050. This massive movement of people from rural to urban areas pose challenges for municipal governments. Resources used to run services like the municipal transportation or healthcare systems will not keep up with the rhythm of the population’s growth. To meet the growing demand of resources, cities must evolve and build advanced, large-scale networks able to efficiently retrieve and distribute the needed resources. Not only, the same citizen should have access to different services that may need to share information to interoperate correctly. Multiple networks will therefore need a common technological layer where confidential data about citizens can be exchanged and stored securely. The emerging technological tool to implement such platform, so to empower the Smart Cities of tomorrow, is the blockchain. But what is a blockchain? How does it work? Which applications for Smart Cities can we run on top of it? The goal of this paper is to answer these questions.

2019 03 SCWhitePaper GraphDatabases

Graph Databases for Smart Cities (March 2019)

Martin Brugnara, Matteo Lissandrini , Yannis Velegrakis - University of Trento, Aalborg University

Smart Cities generate continuously a huge amounts of graph data. The collection, processing, and analysis of such data is crucial for the prosperity and progress of the cities. Many specialized solutions have been developed for dealing with graph data. Among them are Graph Database Systems that offer storage and querying for graph data. In this paper we present a detailed and curated selection of such systems that offer a standard interaction method via the Apache TinkerPop’s Gremlin protocol and report the summary of our detailed evaluation of such systems. We also analyze some scenarios in the domain of Smart Cities and, based on our findings, suggest the most appropriate system to use in each use case.

2019 02 13 HTTPVideoStreaming

HTTP Video Streaming:  The Quality – Reliability Latency Triangle (February 2019)

Matteo Saloni, Member, University of Trento, Trento, Italy

Nowadays, IP video traffic is responsible for a vast amount of the global IP traffic over Internet, an increasing trend fueled not only by the usage of personal computers, but also by the rising in prominence of mobile devices and smart-tvs as primary entertainment consumption devices among users. As of 2018, the leading paradigm of delivery is HTTP-based adaptive streaming; a technique that carries pre-encoded video segments over HTTP/TCP packets. While many efforts have been spent towards reaching a satisfying visual experience, one critical point remains mostly untackled by all the prominent HAS protocols: the latency of delivery. With the term latency, we indicate the time passed from the instant a video is captured to the moment it is displayed on the user’s device, a key aspect in the viewing of live events such as sports or happenings. In this white-paper we will evaluate some innovative approaches and technological advancements which can re-balance the triangle between visual quality, network reliability and occupation and delivery latency, by first examining the reasons which lead to an increase in latency for HAS protocols, and then investigating some of the most promising proposals in the field.

2019 01 Non Intrusive Load Monitoring

Non-Intrusive Load Monitoring to Foster New Services for Smart Cities (January 2019)

Matteo Nardello - Department of Industrial Engineering, DII, University of Trento, Italy.

Energy is the foundation block for any socio- economic development. Today, due to population growth and the industrialization of developing countries, we are facing a continuous increase in the energy demand. Improving the strategies to generate, optimize and distribute the energy produced is one of the main challenges that smart cities are currently trying to address. New services like demand respond and demand side management are starting to appear, to better manage the production and distribution of energy. Before this can happen, a solid smart metering infrastructure must be built, in order to monitor and give real-time feedback about energy usage. To foster a distributed energy monitoring infrastructure in smart cities, Non-Intrusive Load Monitoring (NILM) may represent the key for both commercial and residential buildings. The basic idea of NILM, suggests using the aggregate power consumption, measured at the utility meter, to track single appliances contribution, in order to avoid the need for a sensor for each appliance to be monitored.
2019 01 Data Management

Data Management & Smart Cities (January 2019)

Martin Brugnara, Cristian Consonni, Daniele Foroni, Sivam Pasupathipillai, Giulia Preti, Paolo Sottovia, Yannis Velegrakis - University of Trento, Italy

Modern cities use information and communication technologies to obtain deep insights on the different aspects of the way they operate, which can allow officials to make informed decisions to improve the operational efficiency of different operations and improve the life of their citizens. Analyzing the data about the different activities poses significant challenges. It is not merely the volume that recent hardware and software advancements have helped to achieve, but also challenges regarding the variety, velocity, and veracity of the data. All this is often known as the Big Data paradigm. In this document, we analyze some of these challenges, which we believe have not yet received considerable attention, we explain their value, and we describe some of the advanced solutions we have developed.

IoT Networking

IOT Networking:  Technologies and Approaches for a Distributed Infrastructure-Less World (January 2019)

Matteo Saloni, Member, IEEE Master degree in Computer Science, University of Trento, Trento, Italy

Internet of things is rapidly becoming a commoditized technology: the widespread availability of low cost devices like personal assistants, smart sensors and always connected home appliances has lead to a situation where network access becomes indispensable. While wired connections may provide bandwidth and reliability, wireless networks are the de-facto standard for IoT due to cost, mobility and scalability advantages. Many wireless technologies can offer a distinct mix of performance, adaptability and power consumption, but which is the most suitable for an IoT world where ubiquitous availability, low power operation, device roaming and reliability are the pillars used to support billions of devices?

Urban Wireless Community Networks

Urban Wireless Community Networks: A Paradim to Boost Smart Applications and an Active Citizenship (January 2019)

Lorenzo Ghiro - Department of Information Engineering and Computer Science (DISI) - University of Trento Trento, Italy

The smart evolution of a city is based on the widespread adoption of Information and Communications Technologys (ICTs). ICTs promise, in fact, to boost innovation into many domains. New mobility paradigms, social networks, educational platforms and monitoring tools for the safety of citizens could be all enhanced exploiting ICTs. These applications run on top of a mix of mobile and fixed networks maintained by Internet Service Providers (ISPs). This networking paradigm hides threats to the social and economical sustainability of the network. For instance, ISPs can manipulate users’ data, since they have full control of the traffic in the network. Moreover, an urban network is tailored to be economically and socially more sustainable. In this context, Urban Wireless Community Networks (UWCNs) should be favored, as they represent a sustainable networking paradigm, ideal for the creation of innovative services for a new generation of smart-cities. The main purpose of this paper is to present the Urban Wireless Community Networks, with a brief analysis of the underpinning technologies and highlighting their prospective social impact. To this end, a review of potential applications is provided, concluding with an outline of the open - challenges that still needs to be addressed in order to foster the growth of a Community Network in the city of Trento.

digital culture smart tourism

A digital culture for a smart tourism (June 2018)

Chiara Di Meo

The work highlights the main characteristics about the evolution of the way tourists access cultural offer of available destination, the role that the new technologies play in this scenario - particularly known as “digital tourism”, ”e-tourism” and “m-tourism” – and the emerging challenges, especially at the national level. In a smart community perspective, the tourist experience is required to be sensational. As a result, information is personalized according to the tourists’ different profiles according to a “prosumer” orientation.

OpenAgenda Trento Bets Open Data

OpenAgenda: Trento bets on the Open Data (June 2018)

Chiara Di Meo

The work intends to investigate the pattern that Trento Smart City is following in terms of Open Data and Open Government. Among the several projects dealing with such subject, we consider OpenAgenda an ambitious project aiming at the digitization and integration of all relevant information about the cultural and events agenda spread all over the provincial soil. This specific program is to ascribe to the macro-frame of Trento Smart City, as an example of the city’s  ongoing technological commitment. OpenAgenda represents an example of how the Province of Trento is betting on technological improvement and advancement by developing and boosting synergies with local partners and surrounding municipalities.

Wireless Body Area Networks

Wireless Body Area Networks: a New Paradigm of Personal Smart Health   (June 2018)

Martina Valente and Giandomenico Nollo

In recent years, the healthcare system is undergoing a profound change shifting from a reactive care, in which people are treated when necessary, to proactive care, based on people’s involvement in their own health on a daily basis. This innovative model of healthcare provision aims to expand the capabilities of the healthcare systems outside hospitals, relying on recent technological advances in the development of smart systems. Of paramount importance for this model to be effective is the possibility to access the physiological state of patients in daily life settings, with the purpose of improving diagnosis and treatment of diseases in a personalized fashion and of empowering people towards a major awareness in the management of their own health. Favoured by the latest improvements in both sensors manufacturing and information and communication technologies, wireless Body Area Networks (BAN) represent a smart solution for the multiparametric collection of physiological data. These systems are constituted by networks of wearable sensors that wirelessly communicate to a central unit, satisfying requirements of portability, non-invasiveness and real-time continuous moni- toring. The aim of this white paper is to highlight the impact of wireless wearable multimodal recording in healthcare, reviewing the most important applications in today’s smart cities.

Smart Health Big Data System Medicine

Smart Health from Big Data to System Medicine: the Network Physiology Paradigm (June 2018)

Martina Valente and Giandomenico Nollo

The technological development of the last years and recent advances in scientific research have favoured the emergence of new models of healthcare in smart cities. Fostered by the decentralization of clinical practice outside hospitals and the massive amount of physiological data that are recorded daily, new approaches that aim to go beyond traditional medicine are emerging. At the forefront of numerate disciplines, biological research and clinics, Network Physiology is a new field in science that proposes to take the distance from traditional segregation and look at human physiology from a holistic perspective. According to this approach, systems composing the human body are studied in their interactions, through newly developed theoretical frameworks and cutting edge data analysis tools. The aim is to introduce new biomarkers of physiological functioning that will improve our knowledge about the human body, help clinicians in diagnoses and enhance prevention of critical events. This white paper elaborates on the impact of Network Physiology in future smart cities and presents how diversified fields of science are implementing this paradigm to help scientific and clinical progress.

Health in Cities

Health in Smart Cities (June 2018)


A brief overview of the current challenges and trends in the field of healthcare with a view to a re-organization of cities in a smart direction. The main challenge is the development of innovative models supported by high-tech services for the prevention of frailty and disability in an aging society. Indeed, an hospital- based healthcare system as the only center for dealing with all the issues relative to health in a direct or indirect manner is inadequate to the peculiar needs of an increasing number of elderly people. This results in the need to build a network of highly integrated and continuous support services that can be  implemented in differentiated assistance projects. In this context, the technology is playing an increasingly important role and an analysis is necessary regarding the sustainability and impact of the new health technologies on the existing scenery.