Privacy and Digital Governance

We have provided some information below about what is in the MIDP to help inform your feedback. The survey questions follow at the bottom of this page. Once you have filled in your answers, please click “Submit." You can then either click “Next Section” to continue taking the survey or click “Done” to finish.

Waterfront Toronto asked for:

  • Urban innovation, including technology-enabled, inclusive, connected communities

  • The required governance constructs to stimulate the growth of an urban innovation cluster, including legal frameworks (e.g. Intellectual Property, privacy, data sharing)

Sidewalk Labs proposed:

  • A new data/digital governance framework that would be applied and incorporated into the development plan for the project and applied to all parties proposing to collect and use data (before the collection and use of data can begin)

  • To adopt, promote, and/or develop “clear standards that make data publicly accessible, secure, and resilient” in order to:

    • allow individuals, researchers, and organizations to more easily access properly protected open data from Quayside;

    • inform decision-making;

    • promote use of this data in the creation of new or competing services; and

    • increase security and resiliency for critical infrastructure

Other elements of Sidewalk Labs’ proposals:

  • Sidewalk Labs is proposing to the creation of an Urban Data Trust: a “steward of urban data and the public interest without stifling innovation.” The Urban Data Trust would oversee a responsible data use process, including by drafting “responsible data use guidelines” that are assessed using a “responsible data use assessment”

  • Sidewalk proposes that all entities – including public and private sector actors – would be subject to this process and that the trust would have the authority to approve or reject any proposed collection or use of urban data. The Urban Data Trust would apply in addition to, and not replace, existing privacy laws

Waterfront Toronto’s Note to Reader Review:

  • There is no concept of “urban data” in Canadian privacy law. Data that is captured in urban spaces is protected by privacy law where it can be linked to an individual (e.g. security cameras) and it falls outside of privacy law when it does not (e.g. sensors that detect the presence of a pedestrian and nothing else, or air quality readings that do not relate to any individual)

  • The responsible data use process would be similar to a “privacy impact assessment” mandated for many public sector entities, which requires a full privacy analysis as part of a given project’s decision-making process

  • Sidewalk Labs has initial proposals relating to data collection, data use and digital governance and it is proposing a framework that would apply to any proposals to collect and use data in the project area. It would be premature to make any evaluation of the proposed innovations as they are still under development and not yet at a stage that can be assessed for full compliance with Waterfront Toronto’s principles and the governing legislative and regulatory frameworks

  • Work is ongoing at all levels of government, among academia and in civil society to address digital governance concerns. Waterfront Toronto is monitoring these developments

Waterfront Toronto’s early thinking on risks to consider:

  • Waterfront Toronto has undertaken a preparatory review to identify privacy risks and mitigations for all proposed innovations in the MIDP

  • Waterfront Toronto recognizes that many of the ideas proposed in the MIDP rely on technologies that are still under development. Should the project move forward to an implementation phase, additional evaluation related to privacy and/or digital governance will need to be conducted with additional detailed information

Waterfront Toronto’s questions for you about Privacy and Digital Governance

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How receptive are you to exploring this proposal from Sidewalk Labs?

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additional questions about Privacy and Digital Governance

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