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What digital services Mancunians want from the next Mayor

Residents in Manchester are set to decide who they want as the next Mayor next week.

Policies on technology are likely to be big factor when it comes to decision making. The Manchester Technology Fund was launched earlier this year as an emergency response to support disadvantaged young people learning from home, following the lockdown announcement and immediate closure of schools and colleges.

While this tech for good initiative was welcomed, there are some broader trust issues in the area when it comes to technology. New research from VMware exposed that there is a significant lack of trust in the North West in the way that technology is being used by government and in public services – 59% of Mancunians don’t trust the government to use algorithms to benefit them and their interests, and not its own.

This means that there is little appetite for the implementation of digital services from local governments that will improve their overall experience:

· Less than a quarter (22%) of those in the North West are excited about the prospect of local parking spaces being equipped with sensors to alert motorists when one nearby becomes free

· Just over one in five (24%) Mancunians are excited by the prospect of smart street lighting

· Only 18% of Mancunians are excited by the prospect of smart bins that monitor the rubbish level and lets disposal teams know when they need to be emptied – in fact more are scared or nervous about this being implemented (33%)