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Glasgow Digital Housing Strategy: A Timely and Much-Needed Development

Glasgow aims to improve access to housing services by pursuing its “Digital Housing Strategy”, which runs from 2022 to 2028.

(Photo by Chidiebere Nwogu)

Glasgow City Council's “Digital Housing Strategy”, planned to run from 2022 to 2028 has been described as a “timely, much-needed development”.

The city council implemented the programme in November 2022 in response to the Covid-19 pandemic, and in recognition of the need to make the best use of technological innovations and trends, as seen in many other big cities around the world.

The aim is to deliver improved services to Glaswegians and make life easier by making major housing services affordable and accessible by bringing them online. Around 65% of Glasgow households are currently able to access a broadband connection.

Digital housing has developed in many countries and cities, with places like Dubai, Boston, London, Amsterdam and Singapore among the top 10 “smart” cities of the world. This development has been motivated by an era of technological advancement and spread.

Considering the time and advanced development of many cities’ digitalisation and Smart City journeys, Glasgow is a little behind with the strategy.

Councillor Malcolm Mitchell, who represents the Garscadden and Scotstoun areas, expressed confidence in the programme and emphasised the strategy’s importance. “The digital housing strategy is something that is important. It's the 21st century so it is important that we enable people to access what they need to access in a digital environment.

Nevertheless, the city council’s Digital Housing Strategy comes at a time when it is sorely needed. Councillor Mitchell believes that adapting to the new development was more important than its timing, “In terms of the timing, it is tough. Some say it's early, some say it's behind, is there ever the right time for something? It’s hard to know when the exact right time is.”

Councillor Mitchell added, “COVID has just happened over the last couple of years, there are so many things that we are kind of always been forced to adapt to online, digitally…housing is of course, one those things,”

"One of the things we do in Glasgow is digital inclusion where we try to get more and more people online and able to access services, whether housing services or our own council services online.”

WATCH: Councillor Malcolm Mitchell emphasises the importance of the Digital Housing Strategy.

The Digital Housing Strategy is a step in the right direction and comes at a time when most cities and political leaders are concerned about technological and digital development.

Lewis Dannly, a student from Glasgow, expressed satisfaction at the timing, saying that such a programme should be happening in Glasgow, without using timing as a yardstick of comparison. "Dubai is a very wealthy city in comparison to Glasgow. There may be some things that Glasgow is more capable of and they may have more pressing matters.”

George Street, Glasgow, site of Glasgow City Council offices and the University of Strathclyde’s Royal College building. (Photo by Chidiebere Nwogu)

Councillor Mitchell stressed that the Digital Housing Strategy is an important part of Glasgow’s digital journey.

“Whether it’s the right time, whether it should have been earlier, whether it should have been later," he said. "Whatever it may be, at this time what is important is that we make sure we bring everyone to this digital journey."


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