Trust and the Smart City: The Hong Kong Paradox

Alistair Cole, Émilie Tran

Research output: Contribution to journalJournal articlepeer-review

4 Citations (Scopus)
63 Downloads (Pure)


Based mainly on a Hong Kong-wide survey carried out in March-April 2021, while also drawing on a round of stakeholder interviews from July 2020 to December 2021, the article interprets the linked phenomena of trust and the smart city in the specific context of the Hong Kong Special Administrative Region. In the main body of the article, four angles are used to understand facets of trust-smart city relations, centred on characteristic trust, trust and technology, the role of intermediaries, and trust in government. The main findings of the survey centre around the data trust paradox (of high support for technology in a low-trust environment), the social impact of trust and mistrust (strongly correlated with age and political affiliation), and trust in the smart city as a weathervane of trust in government. Factors such as a digitally literate population, a decades-long investment in technology, and a substantial record of delivery provide solid reasons to believe that a strategic-technical narrative on the smart city might succeed where others have failed to convince.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)9-20
Number of pages12
JournalChina Perspectives
Issue number130
Publication statusPublished - Sept 2022
EventTrust in the Smart City final conference - Hong Kong Baptist University, Hong Kong, China
Duration: 29 Apr 202229 Apr 2022

Scopus Subject Areas

  • Social Sciences(all)

User-Defined Keywords

  • trust
  • smart city
  • Hong Kong
  • data
  • technology
  • narrative


Dive into the research topics of 'Trust and the Smart City: The Hong Kong Paradox'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this