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E-democracy in collaborative planning: a critical review
 

E-democracy in collaborative planning: a critical review

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E-democracy in collaborative planning: a critical review

E-democracy in collaborative planning: a critical review
Francesco Rotondo, Francesco Selicato - Department of Architecture and Town Planning of Polytechnic of Bari

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    E-democracy in collaborative planning: a critical review E-democracy in collaborative planning: a critical review Presentation Transcript

    • E-democracy in collaborative planning: a critical review Francesco Selicato Francesco Rotondo Dipartimento di Architettura e Urbanistica Politecnico di Bari e-mail: [email_address] ; [email_address] "Cities, Technologies and Planning" CTP 11 June 19th - June 23th, 2011 University of Cantabria, Santander, Spain
    • Questions for Today
      • Collaborative approach to planning: roles and relations with ICTs
      • ICTs for collaborative planning: threats and opportunities
      • The U-city paradigm: opportunities and risks for urban planning participation
      • Conclusions
    • Collaborative approach to planning: roles and relations with ICTs Urban and regional planning is more and more a collaborative and communicative process, where many actors with different professional and cultural background interact usually holding conflicting interests (Duany and Zyberk, 2004; Forester, 1999; Healey, 1997; Laurini, 2001) ICT and planning U-city conclusions
    • Collaborative approach to planning: roles and relations with ICTs ICT and planning U-city conclusions The classical methodologies and techniques for collecting local knowledge and instituting creative conflict management techniques (such as brainstorming, focus groups and enacting scenarios) right up to participatory planning in the form of planning for real (Gibson, 1981), can all be implemented using informatics tools and especially the Web, as a on line services “dispenser” (Flaxman, 2007). The use of the ICTs in the experiences of collaborative planning place some questions as the following:
    • ICTs for collaborative planning: threats and opportunities ICT and planning U-city conclusions
      • how best to collect, manage and summarize the inhabitants’ knowledge, generally expressed in descriptive form (stories, examples, memories of the past...), which are difficult to “process” in computers and used as operative indications for the planning actions, which normally require prescriptive, regulating arguments (zoning, norms, etc.) .
      • These are generally a highly time-consuming operations for participants and “facilitators”.
      • In the ICT collaborative planning experiences, the planner is mostly a trainer, a mediator, an urban virtual designer, in a distance and/or F/to/F participation process.
    • ICTs for collaborative planning: threats and opportunities
      • Some critical aspects
      • The computer-mediated environment is certainly colder and less stimulating than a traditional face-to-face meeting
      • The lower level of interaction occurring among our participants, particularly in the on-line sessions of same-time – different place type, is often aggravated by the lack of feedback among participants
      ICT and planning U-city conclusions
    • ICTs for collaborative planning: threats and opportunities
      • Opportunities
      • The speed of accomplishment of some activities on-line, reducing or even eliminating geographical distance
      • Transparency and traceability of the actions and opinions
      • A well-constructed, continually updated web site favours participation of the absents
      • Using ICT knowledge is ready to be implemented in a PPGIS
      • ICTs don’t eliminate the need for face-to-face meetings but it does allow them to be held in a more aware climate
      ICT and planning U-city conclusions
    • The U-city paradigm: opportunities and risks for urban planning participation W iki-based collaboration technologies, Web mapping, cellular communications and geospatial positioning have enlarged the possibility already offered by other tools of the ICT for collaborative planning, already used ICT and planning U-city conclusions
    • The U-city paradigm: opportunities and risks for urban planning participation ICT and planning U-city conclusions Open Street Map Bari (Italy), focusing on some shops and services present in the area
    • The U-city paradigm: opportunities and risks for urban planning participation The concept of “user-generated content" has already known in planning participation literature. There are numerous examples of PPGIS where interested individuals have offered input and feedback to professionals and communities of interest in both roundtable and Web-based settings. What is different with Web 2.0 approach is the role assumed by the community. The Community is completely autonomous in producing information … ICT and planning U-city conclusions
    • The U-city paradigm: opportunities and risks for urban planning participation Turner coined the term “neogeography” explained as “geographical techniques and tools used for personal activities or for utilization by a non-expert group of users; not formal or analytical” ICT and planning U-city conclusions
    • The U-city paradigm: opportunities and risks for urban planning participation Meanwhile, Goodchild coined the term “Volunteered Geographic Information” (or VGI) defined as the harnessing of tools to create, assemble, and disseminate geographic data provided voluntarily by individuals, who create their own content by marking locations where various events occurred or certain features exist. ICT and planning U-city conclusions
    • The U-city paradigm: opportunities and risks for urban planning participation Whilst technologies (e.g. GPS, remote sensing, etc.) can be useful in producing new spatial data, VGI could be a useful and “cheap” way to update and describe such data. About this last possibility there is the necessity to determine how does an organization assess the degree of trust of a new producer. This question, is in our opinion, the fundamental one to improve this tools in institutional activities. ICT and planning U-city conclusions
    • The U-city paradigm: opportunities and risks for urban planning participation Opportunities Enlarging the possibilities to produce knowledge and geographical information could be a powerful tool for improving participation also in urban planning process. Digital society could exploit these new possibilities to describe common places, let emerging the geography of communities so important for a planner to support deliberation in spatial decision making. ICT and planning U-city conclusions
    • The U-city paradigm: opportunities and risks for urban planning participation ICT and planning U-city conclusions It is, in some sense, a new and independent way to build, for each of the inhabitants, their own “image of the city”, the same that Lynch as tried to describe in its fundamental work. The classical image of Boston presented in the Lynch’s famous book , highlighting paths , edges , districts , nodes , landmarks
    • The U-city paradigm: opportunities and risks for urban planning participation Opportunities Thinking that the use of these tools it isn’t necessary related to one plan process in particular, but it is a continuous activity, autonomously made by each volunteer, after a period of intense use of “open street map” it becomes a wonderful and rich “geographical diary” of a community. Planner could analyze this “on going map” to search for the social strongholds of the city by which organizing the plan, integrating them with the natural elements, characterizing the sites. ICT and planning U-city conclusions
    • The U-city paradigm: opportunities and risks for urban planning participation Opportunities community maps created with VGI could have the advantage to be always available, updated and they could be a very useful base for more advanced studies made expressly for a planning process. ICT and planning U-city conclusions
    • The U-city paradigm: opportunities and risks for urban planning participation Risks for urban planning participation process The possibility offered by the web 2.0 approach to every citizen to become a ‘produsers’ (in the sense of Bruns, 2006) of geographical information is a very interesting novelty in planning process, but it could take planning action and debate into what we can call a “ geo-information overload ”. Planning, is a delicate process in which the opinions of communities and stakeholders aren’t always the same. So as in YouTube, every one could publish its images and comments about things happening, with geo-tagging we have the same freedom about geographical object. ICT and planning U-city conclusions
    • The U-city paradigm: opportunities and risks for urban planning participation freedom needs responsibility …. ICT and planning U-city conclusions
    • The U-city paradigm: opportunities and risks for urban planning participation Risks for urban planning participation process So, in theory (because until now experiences are very few), we will have many different tags for the same spatial object, generating possible confusion in the same inhabitants and stakeholders. The major risk in a “geo-information overload” era, could be, in our opinion, what the psychologist James Reason has called “confirmation bias” explained as the tendency to confirm an idea or a notice that we have learned, also if there are evidences which are demonstrating exactly the contrary. We will also need to analyse the frequency of inputs let by the volunteers on the map, to comprehend the interest about places shown by communities. ICT and planning U-city conclusions
    • Conclusions In this so complex, fuzzy, social environment we can try to use PPGIS, ICTS and VGI to elicit and represent cognitive space, which we experiment and built with people in the experiences of collaborative planning. Using VGI we’ll try to capture and translate ‘mental maps’ of boundaries, locations and zones into geo-referenced outputs. In this very early stage of use, we have tried to highlight possible risks and opportunities of using VGI in collaborative planning. “ Geo-information overload ” and “ confirmation bias ” seem to us very relevant question to face. We need to use VGI for a better understanding of the tools offered, and this work want to be just a first contribution to comprehend their possible use. ICT and planning U-city Conclusions
    • THANKS FOR YOUR PATIENT ATTENTION!!! Francesco Selicato Francesco Rotondo Department of Architecture and Town Planning, Polytechnic of Bari, Technical University (Italy) e-mail: [email_address] ; [email_address] ;