[We are happy to share the first set of videos from the Session 1 "Reshaping urban engagement and publics through data and experiments I" of the recent workshop "Reshaping Cities through Data and Experiments". The introduction, session 2 and session 3 are also available]
Economic arrangements and forms of public-private collaboration in Medellin (Félix Talvard)
Medellín’s transformation from a place of violence to one of urban innovation, starting in the late 1990s, has been widely chronicled in the media and substantially studied by geographers, planners and a few sociologists. Two bodies of literature make the bulk of the studies available: one focuses on local development policies, the other on the remaking of the city’s infrastructure to fit development goals. More recent initiatives that simultaneously aim to transform urban governance, citizenship and the built environment have come under little scrutiny, but are important to understand how smart urbanism develops in Latin America and so-called developing countries. I use the case of Medellín to ask questions such as:
- What does an “inclusive smart city” mean in the context of Medellín?
- How do urban innovation and experiments fit in “development” policies and narratives?
- What kind of data is generated and used in such projects, and for which purpose?
- How does this impact citizenship, public-private relations and (mobility) infrastructures?
Data and Experiments as time devices: SBIR, Testbedding and real-time management in Dublin (Claudio Coletta)
Urban experiments have been described as sites where different sustainable, prosperous and liveable urban futures can be tested in the real world (Evans et al. 2016; de Jong et al. 2015; Kullman 2013).
Despite the emphasis on the future, the actual construction of time in smart city development and its associated temporalities received scant attention by research: the desirable futures and the looking forward vision embedded in discourses on urban innovation require thus further scrutiny, especially referring to the actionability and accountability of time devices: the former related to how data and experiments enable urban change and the latter referring to how urban change generated by data and experiments can be justified, monitored and planned as a coherent story.
The aim of this paper is to take time as the main analytical category to account for experimental and data-driven urbanism, and look at data and experiments as devices that produces peculiar time arrangement at large scale. Rather than focused exclusively on the idea of future, the study intends to shed light on the time devices produced by data and experiment in cities: how do they orient urban change? How cities and everyday life in them are affected by and take part to their composition?
We are grateful to the IRC, Ambassade de France in Ireland and the Maynooth University Social Sciences Institute for their generous support and for making possible this event.