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Emily Royall

Smart Cities Administrator in the Information & Technology Services Department for the City of San Antonio

Emily works at the intersection of public administration and technology to build inclusive futures for cities. She is currently Smart Cities Administrator in the Information & Technology Services Department for the City of San Antonio (her hometown), where she leads a team to execute San Antonio’s “Smarter Together” Smart Cities initiative and supports a multi-stakeholder smart city partnership called “SmartSA”. Emily currently serves as Vice Chair of United for Smart and Sustainable Cities, an international collaborative platform led by the International Telecommunications Union (ITU), UNECE and UN-Habitat. She is also Co-Chair of the Policy Working Group for the GovAI Coalition, a network of over 150 public agencies in the United States working to promote responsible and purposeful AI in the public sector.

Previously Emily advised UN-Habitat’s “People-Centered Smart Cities Flagship Program” and authored six UN playbooks on smart cities for local governments. Emily’s professional experience spans academic, non-profit, and government agencies including working at City Form Labs a Singapore-based smart cities laboratory, the Massachusetts Office of Information Technology (MassIT), and as Data Director for a local newsroom “The San Antonio Report”. She has several years of public sector experience in digital services, data governance, public participation, and smart city strategy.

Emily has published and presented her work in national and international forums including UN-Habitat, StateScoop, UrbanAI, and GovTech Magazine, as well as the World Urban Forum 11th Session and Smart City World Expo. Across her portfolio, Emily strives deliver public services that maximize transparency, security, equity, and accessibility for all. She believes people should be at the center of smart cities, and her work focuses on creating greater public oversight over smart city technologies and the data that powers them. Emily holds a Masters in City Design & Development at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology.