«Умные города» и конституционные права и свободы: конфликт или союз?
Modern urban processes are closely connected with the implementation and use of digital technologies. As a result, the phenomenon of “smart cities” first gained popularity in the scientific literature, and later in the political and legal agenda. There is no unified approach to the definition of a smart city. To our view, it can be understood as a city in which digital technologies are actively implemented and used to improve various urban processes, as well as the ability of the citizens to use digital technologies. However, the external attractiveness of the digital technologies conceals the risks of disproportionate restriction and violation of constitutional rights and freedoms. In this regard, the author proposes to shift attention from the technological aspects of “smart cities” to the constitutional and legal issues.
This article examines the issues of inequality, the right to privacy, and the right of citizens to participate in the management of public affairs in “smart cities”. Problems of compliance with the principle of equality and non-discrimination are caused by various reasons, including socio-economic inequality of the population and technological backwardness of certain territorial formations. An analysis of the legislation has shown a lack of effective legal guarantees for the non-discriminatory implementation of technology. In order to strengthen them, it is proposed to establish a prohibition on the realization of certain rights only in electronic form, and to conduct programs aimed at eliminating the digital divide. The right to privacy in “smart cities” is disproportionately limited by the public authorities’ desire to ensure security through the use of video surveillance systems. As a result, this right is diminished, suggesting the need for restrictions on the use of video surveillance systems. Smart city technologies are also used to increase the level of public participation in city management processes. However, there is rather a quantitative increase in the number of residents participating in urban processes, but the real opportunity to influence the decisions of public authorities does not increase. The use of e-voting in elections and referendums carries the risk of violating the basic principles of electoral law.
The conclusion of the article proposes mechanisms of increase the guarantees of constitutional rights and freedoms in “smart cities”. In particular, it substantiates the need to improve the regulatory framework for the introduction of new technologies, to enhance the role of the Constitutional Court of the Russian Federation in the actualization of constitutional rights and freedoms in the digital era, to take into account the state of socio-economic development of the city during the use of “smart cities” technologies.