The County of San Mateo placed third in the 2018 Digital Counties Survey, the 16th annual ranking of the most technologically-savvy counties in the United States.
The County was recognized among other counties in the 500,000 to 999,999 population range for the value it places on technology and the empowerment of its tech leaders. Key elements of the County’s submission included its sweeping open data initiative, its technological collaboration with a wide variety of public and private partners, its efforts to shatter the digital divide by offering more than 70 free SMC Public Wi-Fi sites and the launch of its highly innovative SMC Labs program. This new program aims to utilize communications technology to connect not only people but also “things” like air quality sensors and smart streetlights to increase government operational efficiency, improve citizen welfare and share information with the public.
Also critical to the County’s third place win was the alignment of its technology programs with the overarching County goals outlined in its Shared Vision 2025 document. This kind of alignment is a key requirement for Top 10 winners, according to the Center for Digital Government, proving technology has been fully integrated into a county’s planning and processes.
“As a county located in Silicon Valley, we understand how technology profoundly affects all aspects of our lives,” said Dave Pine, president of the Board of Supervisors. “The County is committed to implementing promising new technology solutions in order to better serve our residents, operate with transparency, and deliver public services more efficiently and cost effectively.”
Last year, the County also placed in the top 10 for the Digital Counties Survey, ranking sixth place in the country among other counties of its size. Moving up to third place this year shows the County continues to strive for technology excellence and adds to the list of awards it has received for technology initiatives, said Chief Information Officer Jon Walton.
“The absence within the county of a dominant city with deep resources places County government in a unique role to be both a technology thought leader and a regional facilitator for broad-based technology investments that serve the region,” Walton said. “This award further demonstrates our success in this mission.