Digital advisers criticize Waterfront Toronto following high-profile resignation

Multiple members of the panel advising Waterfront Toronto on its proposed smart city development are speaking out in support of a member who resigned in protest Thursday morning.

The resignation places further pressure on Waterfront Toronto and Sidewalk Labs, the Google sister company seeking to build the smart city, to address data and privacy concerns ahead of the final agreement.

In a strongly-worded resignation letter, Saadia Muzaffar, founder of TechGirls Canada, criticized Waterfront Toronto’s lack of leadership and failure to address the concerns.

“Saadia’s resignation is a tremendous loss for the [panel],” said Pamela Robinson, an associate professor of urban planning at Ryerson University who sits on the now 13-member Digital Strategy Advisory Panel (DSAP). “Her experience and point of view were vital to a robust interrogation of the myriad data ownership, control, access and possession issues this project presents.

“The points raised in her resignation letter are important for us to tackle moving forward,” said Robinson.

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