What we do

SmartOakland is the first-of-its-kind, non-profit, Smart City consultancy built by Oaklanders to address the needs of the 145 micro-communities that make up our vibrant city.

In December 2016 Reuters and East Bay Express released new articles about Fruitvale's lead poisoning rates being 4 xs worse than Flint, Michigan. After trying to locate the responsible agency, council person, city department, or individual contact who was running the orchestrated effort to abate lead in Fruitvale we discovered no such entity existed.

So we went to Code for America's Oakland City Camp 2017 in March and asked the 500+ audience member this question:

Should zip code determine life expectancy?"

It was standing room only for a large group of people who joined our mind-mapping workshop that day to brainstorm a way to address lead poisoning and tackle the issue head on.

We continued using what we knew to design a technology solution using low cost Internet of Things infrastructure, LoRa networks, sensors, Xray scanners, fog and cloud computing knowing we were right on with this answer, but there was one problem.  We formed SmartOakland as a non-profit in July to crowdfund the money to implement the solution and we're just now starting to get the word out. We're asking for your help to reach our $86,000 goal to start Nov. 1: Keep spreading the word!

Updates as of September 28, 2017

We just met with Larry Brooks, Director, Alameda County Healthy Homes Dept/Lead Poisoning Prevention Program and Dale Hagen, Housing Services Manager at Alameda County, and they shared a wealth of information to help form a clearer picture for us of why it's taking so long to fix the issue of lead poisoning.

They described the long history of groups like PUEBLO, (People United for a Better Life In Oakland), starting a community-lead effort to end lead poisoning in Fruitvale in 1987!  This is where the Alameda Healthy Homes and Lead Poisoning Prevention division comes from.

larry brooks risk map alameda county.png

They shared this aggregate data pulled together by local area health agencies while they collaborate in looking for patterns and new approaches to stop lead poisoning. 

Rather than explain it on their behalf, we've asked Larry, and Dale to join us at our Oakland City Hall Smart City Meetups to share this information with you in person.

Join our Meetup group to receive an invite for our upcoming Oct. 21, 2017, "Oct. 21: Energy Platforms, Smart Grids, Infrastructure and IIoT" and the November Meetup, "Nov. 18: Passion & Purpose of Diverse Metropolitan Networks" where we hope to feature live data dashboards showing lead poisoning data so we can start getting a grip on the real-time problem so we can figure out what to do, faster.

SmartChicago served as great inspiration and a reference model for us because they combine forces from the Code for America Hacktivist Brigades, the MacArthur Foundation, large funding partners, and a technology and entrepreneurship co-working center, 1871, to address city challenges in Chicago so we've learned from their great work too.

We're looking for pillar partners like these, today, and a co-working space(s) for SmartOakland to begin and continue building success stories with Oakland micro-communities.

This is the collaborative architecture we use to amplify and connect six core contributors of value with constituent services, which is what we call our Resilient Solution Framework. It runs on data sharing, diversity, inclusion, and systems thinking and is the operational DNA of our design process.

We look to the private sector, corporate sponsors, and crowdfunding for primary financial support and will apply for traditional grant funding too.  To date, the last five months have been 100% pro-bono work and immediate funding is required to move forward with our flagship lead abatement program. Help us get going today by donating to our Fruitvale Micropilot.

end Oakland lead poisoning by visualizing invisible lead location data so we can find it & get it out

We spent the last few months proactively designing a Smart City solution to end lead poisoning in Oakland, CA and we've named it, "Get the Lead Out". 

find it & get it out

It's pretty straight forward, except one major issue: Lead is invisible.

1) find it
2) get rid of it

So we're using XRAY VISION to find it, drop a pin in it, and visualize it so it is no longer hidden from view. After you can see it you can understand it then figure out how to get it out of there.

If you don't already know the story, we put this quick video together so you can get up to speed and help out however you can.

It's time to stop poisoning our people

Here's how lead gets into kids, adults, and our society today:

Contribute to micropilot.smartoakland.org now to help us end this poison pipeline using people & tech!


Our Get the Lead Out live lead location data assessment dashboard pilot will cost $86,000 for the total engagement of phase 1 for 100 homes and families.

smartoakland news


history of smartoakland

SmartOakland began January 22, 2016 when Michael Ford kicked off the City of Oakland's response to the Federal DOT call for Smart City Challenge and Stephanie Hayden joined the network of crowd-sourced talent to dream up a Smart City proposal for Oakland. The group enjoyed working together so much Stephanie started Smart CityMeetups and they continued meeting once a month Oakland City Hall to keep conversations going toward future projects.