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2nd Workshop 'Experimenting with Urban Living Labs (ULLs) beyond Smart City-Regions' from the Series 'Bridging European Urban Transformations' (Brussels, 13th Feb. 2017)

This workshop is the second of the series 'Bridging European Urban Transformations' that the Urban Transformation programme at the University of Oxford and the Vrije Universiteit in Brussel are co-producing in partnership from 2016-2017. This workshop will take place in the delegation of the Basque Regional Government in Brussels.

If you are interested in participating in the workshop please register to the workshop via Evenbrite:

https://www.eventbrite.com/e/experimenting-with-urban-living-labs-ulls-beyond-smart-city-regions-tickets-30193233775

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2nd Workshop 'Experimenting with Urban Living Labs (ULLs) beyond Smart City-Regions' from the Series 'Bridging European Urban Transformations' (Brussels, 13th Feb. 2017)

  1. 1. Bridging European Urban Transformations Workshop Series in Brussels 2016-2017 Funded by the ESRC 2nd Workshop Experimenting with Urban Living Labs (ULLs) beyond Smart City-Regions Co-organised in partnership by the University of Oxford – Urban Transformations www.urbantransformations.ox.ac.uk & VUB – Brussels Centre for Urban Studies www.urbanstudies.brussels
  2. 2. 2 Date: 13th February 2017, Monday Duration: 9:00-16:00 Venue: Delegation of the Basque Country to the EU (Eusko Jaurlaritza), Brussels, Belgium Address: 27, Rue des Deux Eglises. Post Code, 1000. Brussels. Topic At time in smart city and smart specialistion strategy (S3 ) policy discourses, governance implementations have been proposed in European cities and regions without considering appropriately the negotiations between stakeholders, multiple expectations, and possible or desirable urban futures jointly built by them. As such, ‘smart’ technological solutions have not always focused on needs and usability by citizens and at times generate a governance misalignment between the ‘experimental city’1 and publics, citizens and stakeholders. In this context, to understand inter-dependent challenges and opportunities for different stakeholders we might focus on the dynamics of urban complexity, experimental research, and alternative policy approaches to cities and regions. This workshop is an invitation to rethink ‘urban Europe’ around what might be seen as an experimental laboratory ‘turn’ research and policy intervention. Urban Living Labs (ULLs), exemplified by networks such as ENoLL (European Network of Living Labs) foreground projects that present active user involvement, real-life settings, multi- stakeholder participation, multi-method approaches and co-creation. In contrast, the ‘smartness’ of some European urban strategies is dominated by a technological discourse centred on knowledge flows and data aggregation that allows the city-region to be managed by a given and fixed private and public partnership governance model. Nonetheless, the contemporary city cannot be just reduced to its economic value generated by partnerships involving powerful public and private actors, such as multinational corporations and the state. As Habermas2 pointed out, “smartness in our city cannot be more technocratic than democratic”. Paralleling this mainstream approach of smart cities and generally under the loose banner of ULLs, urban laboratory initiatives have been increasingly emerging over the last few years as an approach to speed up socio-technological innovation involving multi-stakeholders in co-production processes, and a form of collective urban governance and experimentation addressing the sustainability challenges and opportunities created by urbanisation. What is currently interesting are the ways that city innovation policies propose highly spatially specific and potentially transformative ‘stakeholder-helixes strategies’ (either triple, quadruple or penta) which recognize that 1 Evans, J., A. Karvonen and R. Raven, (2017), Experimental City. London and New York: Routledge. 2 Habermas, J. (2015), The lure of technocracy. New York, USA: Polity Press.
  3. 3. 3 the strategies are in a cross-sectoral blend of the research base, private capital, and public expenditure through invoking civil society that knowledge societies. The enormous potential for experimental forms in European city-regions exists as on- going ULL initiatives under the Urban Living Partnership (Birmingham, Bristol, Leeds, Newcastle and York), JPI Urban Europe schemes and many international schemes such as ENOLL, Mistra Urban Futures, Urban Mechanics, Guggenheim Urban Labs, Urban Lab +, the Guanghzhou International Award for Urban Innovation, Rockefeller 100 resilient cities, GUST snapshots, urb@exp and ERC urban. Building on the emerging body of these policy initiatives and research, the workshop Experimenting with Urban Living Labs Beyond Smart City-Regions will bring together a group of European academics and policymakers to think through how notions of ‘experimentation’ inform new ways of city working: 1. What does inter-disciplinary integrating place making mean? How can we bring together expertise in areas such as computing, mapping, politics, economy, digital anthropology, spatial analysis and urban planning? 2. How can we deal with multi-stakeholder ‘helix strategies’? What are the roles of the private sector, public authorities, academia, civil society and entrepreneurs/activists in these ULLs initiatives? What should the roles be? 3. How can ULLs, as a form of collective urban governance, positively influence the smart policy agenda in Europe by going beyond its governance implications? 4. What makes the ULL approach attractive and novel? 5. How are ULL initiatives being operationalised in contemporary urban governance for sustainability and low carbon cities? 6. What prospects are there for alternative funding and business models for cities and regions in Europe? 7. What are the practical and political interventions needed within multi- stakeholder approaches, and what are the potential concerns about data technopolitics? 8. Is another urban governance model possible, a third way between state and market? This workshop considers the relationship between technology, the city and policy innovation in cities and regions around Europe. More broadly, it explores the strategic role of institutions in order to foster regional ecosystems of experimentation engaging the public sector, the private sector, academia, civic society and social entrepreneurs/activists.
  4. 4. 4 Programme This one-day workshop commences with an introduction from Prof Michael Keith, co- ordinator of the Urban Transformations ESRC portfolio, and Prof Bas van Heur, co- ordinator of the Brussels Centre for Urban Studies. Thiw will be followed by six slots and speakers who are experts in the field: three from the Urban Transformations ESRC portfolio projects and three from the VUB. This workshop will also include small debate groups led by each section. Each group will deliver their conclusions at the end of the workshop. This workshop emphasizes an interdisciplinary dialogue, bridges the gap between theory and practice, and encourages knowledge exchange between academics, policymakers, citizens and activists. If you are interested in participating in the workshop please register to the workshop via Evenbrite: https://www.eventbrite.com/e/experimenting-with-urban-living-labs-ulls-beyond- smart-city-regions-tickets-30193233775 For further questions, please contact the coordinator directly: igor.calzada@compas.ox.ac.uk The previous workshop on 14th November in SMIT-VUB in Brussels, was entitled: ‘(Un)Plugging Data in Smart City-Regions.’ The workshop builds on the first Brussels workshop of the ESRC Urban Transformations programme and forms part of a series of interventions in partnership. The workshop series entitled ‘Bridging European Urban Transformations’. This is the report published by Prof Keith & Dr Calzada from the Urban Transformations team: http://www.urbantransformations.ox.ac.uk/blog/2016/unplugging-data-in-smart-city- regions-bridging-european-urban-transformations-esrc-workshop-series-european- smart-citizens-as-decision-makers-rather-than-data-providers Coordination: • Dr Igor Calzada, MBA (UOxf-UT) www.igorcalzada.com/about @icalzada & igor.calzada@compas.ox.ac.uk • Prof Bas Van Heur (VUB-BCUS) @basvanheur & bvheur@vub.ac.be
  5. 5. 5 Preliminary Agenda: 9:00-9:15 Welcome: Organisers Prof Michael Keith (UOxf-UT) & Prof Bas van Heur (VUB-BCUS) 9:15-9:30 Welcome: Host institution & Partnership Ms Marta Marin (Delegation of the Basque Country to the EU) & Mr Richard Tuffs (Director of ERRIN). 9:30:9:50 Introduction: Dr Tuija Hirvikoski (President of EnoLL, European Network of Living Labs) 9:50-10:50 Between the ULLs & Smart Cities in the Making (Section 1/3) • 9:50-10:20 Prof Simon Marvin (The University of Sheffield – Urban Institute) Governance of Urban Sustainability Transitions: Advancing the Role of Living Labs http://www.urbantransformations.ox.ac.uk/project/governance-of-urban- sustainability-transitions-advancing-the-role-of-living-labs/ • 10:20-10:50 Prof Gilian Rose (the Open University) Smart Cities in the Making: Learning from Milton Keynes http://www.urbantransformations.ox.ac.uk/project/smart-cities-in-the- making-learning-from-milton-keynes/ 10:50-11:20 Debate: Between the ULLs & Smart Cities in the Making (Chair: Prof. Michael Keith, UOxf-UT) 11:20-11:50 Coffee-break & Networking 11:50-12:50 Comparing ULLs & Smart City Cases (Section 2/3) • 11:50-12:20 Nicola da Schio & Prof Bas van Heur (VUB-BCUS) SmarterLabs: the environmental politics of air pollution. JPI-Urban Europe project. • 12:20-12:50 Dr Nicola Headlam (UOxf-UT) The Urban Living Global Challenge: Desk research presentation 12:50-13:20 Debate: Comparing ULLs & Smart City Cases (Chair: Prof. Bas van Heur, VUB-BCUS)
  6. 6. 6 13:20-14:20 Lunchtime 14:20-15:20 Towards Experimental Cities? Forthcoming book presentation and debate of the practical meaning of ‘experimentation’ (Section 3/3) • 14:20-14:50 Dr Andrew Karvonen (KTH) Book presentation: Evans, J., A. Karvonen and R. Raven, (2016), Experimental City. London and New York: Routledge. • 14:50-15:20 Dr Federico Curugullo (TCD) Co-author of the book: Some comments 15:20-15:50 Debate: Towards Experimental Cities? (Chair: Dr. Igor Calzada, MBA, UOxf-UT) 15:50-16:00 Wrapping-Up and Conclusions In cooperation with: • ERRIN (European Regions Research and Innovation Network) • ENoLL (European Networks of Living Labs) Host institution: • Delegation of the Basque Country to the EU, Eusko Jaurlaritza. Hashtag: #ExperimentingULL

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