#Data

Topic within Citizens & Living
Manon Gravesteijn, Student at Hotelschool The Hague and account management trainee , posted

HELP ME GRADUATE! Resident's self-efficacy for the creation of social cohesion in Amsterdam

Dear community,

To finish my studies at Hotelschool The Hague, I am conducting a research project. My research examines how the level of self-efficacy of residents in intensively visited cities can influence the creation of social cohesion. Over the years, the city of Amsterdam has become flooded with tourists and will therefore be the main focus of this research.

Are you, or have you been, a resident of Amsterdam? Then please do take five minutes out of your day to share your experiences with me. It would mean a lot!
In case of any questions or remarks, do not hesitate to contact me at 781008@hotelschool.nl.

Sharing is much appreciated and thank you very much in advance!

Link to the survey: https://lnkd.in/gtDReWrX

Warm regards,

Manon Gravesteijn

Manon Gravesteijn's picture #Citizens&Living
Pieter de Jong, Project Manager , posted

Compete in the #WaterChallenge / deadline April 10

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UPDATE: MARCH 17
There is still time to participate in the #Waterchallenge. The current timeline is:
• March 30, 11:00-12:00 (UTC+1): Q&A session 2
• April 10: deadline contributions
• April 19, 14:00-17:00 (UTC+1): The three best scoring contributions will present for the jury
_________

What if you could predict your house being flooded, so you can take measures to prevent this?

Does this seem far-fetched? It is not.

Most of the data to be able to do this is readily available, however most people are not aware and the data is sometimes difficult to understand. Take on the SCOREwater* #WaterChallenge and make this and other important water data accessible for everyone.

Participation in the #WaterChallenge  is open to all: students, researchers, professionals, citizens etc. You can join this challenge as an individual or as a team of maximum 4.

Read more on the challenge website: https://www.scorewater.eu/waterchallenge
__
This challenge is connected to the EU-funded (Horizon 2020) research and innovation project SCOREwater. It focusses on enhancing the resilience of cities against climate change and urbanisation by enabling a water smart society. The project develops smart (sensor based) solutions in three different cities, Amersfoort (Netherlands), Barcelona (Spain) and Göteborg (Sweden). The overarching vision is to link the physical and digital world for city water management solutions.

Pieter de Jong's picture #Citizens&Living
Jet van Eeghen, Online communications advisor at Amsterdam Economic Board, posted

AMdEX at MozFest 2022

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Should data be accessible to anyone? AMdEX is committed to a fair data economy, where data owners can securely share their data, while remaining in control of those data. At MozFest - a gathering for, by and about people who love the internet - AMdEX stimulates discussions about data commons: the premise that your data are not automatically available, unless you gave your permission.

As individuals and organizations we often give away our data – without even realizing it. Large tech parties collect, process and use data to make a profit.

Who knows of ways to protect data against tech parties? What conditions would you like to set before sharing your personal data? Or competitively sensitive information? Or your research data? We will discuss such questions during this meetup. Join us and make yourself heard!

This event is held in English.

Jet van Eeghen's picture Meet-up on Mar 11th
Herman van den Bosch, professor in management development , posted

13. Ethical Principles and Applications of Digital Technology: Immersive Technology, Blockchain and Platforms

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In the 13th episode of the Better cities -The contribution of digital technology-series I will continue the description of applications of digital technology and their evaluation based on relevant ethical principles treated in episode 9. Episode 12 discussed: (1) Internet of Things, (2) robotics, and (3) biometrics. Below, I will cover (4) Immersive technology (augmented and virtual reality), (5) blockchain and (6) platforms. By way of conclusion, I return to the implications of all these applications for governance.
The ethical principles mentioned in chapter 9 are: privacy, autonomy, security, control, human dignity, justice, and power relations.

4. Immersive technology (augmented and virtual reality)

Augmented reality adds information to our perception. The oldest examples are messages that pilots of super-fast fighter planes could read on their glasses, so that they eyes without interruption could follow their "target". Its most popular application is the game Pokémon Go. Additional information via the smartphone screen is also often available when visiting 'places of interest'. The infamous Google Glasses were an excellent tool for this purpose but due to the obvious risk of privacy violations their application soon came to an end. This is unfortunate for certain groups, for example the hearing impaired.
Virtual reality goes much further by replacing our sensory perception by images of an artificial world. This requires a special helmet, such as the oculus rift. Applications mainly find their way through gaming. But it is also possible to show the interior of a house in three dimensions or to take a virtual walk through a neighborhood that is yet to be built.

A primitive form of virtual reality was Second live, in which the screen gave access to an alternative reality, in which your avatar communicates with others’. That could go a long way, like someone who reported being raped by a fellow avatar. Nowadays, the capabilities of augmented reality are expanding rapidly. Think of a virtual space where the user meets others to converse, listen, or to do whatever.

Metaverse
Augmented reality takes you to the metaverse, which was first described by Neil Stephenson in his dystopian book Snow Crash in 1992. As the power of computers grew, the idea of the metaverse gained new impetus and recently Marc Zuckerberg announced that his new company Meta Platforms will gradually turn Facebook into a fully digital world. This immerses the users in the most diverse experiences, which they partly evoke themselves, such as communicating with other avatars, attending a concert, going to the disco, and getting acquainted with strangers and of course going to shops, because it remains a medium to make money.
Only recently, Microsoft has also announced that it would bring its operating system (Windows), web servers (Azure), communication networks (Teams and Linkedin) hardware (HoloLens), entertainment (Xbox) and IP (Minecraft) together in a virtual reality. The recent €60 billion-acquisition of game producer Activision Blizzard, producer of the Call of Duty video games, fits in with this policy and indicates that the company expects to make a lot of money with its version of the metaverse.
In the expected struggle between the titans, Amazon will probably join in and build the virtual mall of and for everyone's dreams.

It remains to be seen whether a younger generation, less consumer-addicted and more concerned about nature, is waiting for a completely artificial world. I hope not.

Privacy
The risks of augmented reality have been widely mentioned from the start. For example, for research purposes, Google had been given the right to remotely track the movements of the eyes of people wearing Google glasses. For the rest, it is not only governments and companies that will spy on people, but above all people will spy on each other.

Safety
After a short time, those who move through the metaverse develop balance problems. Worse is that the risk of addiction is high.

Human dignity
There is a danger that people who frequently dwell in imaginary worlds can no longer distinguish fake and real and alienate from themselves in the 'real' world and lose the social skills that are necessary in it.

Power relations
Big Tech is getting even more tools to analyze our preferences and influence us, including through deep fakes, which can imitate existing people in real life. This raises questions about the risks that citizens run, and about the even greater role of companies that offer immersive technology.

5. Blockchain

Blockchain makes it possible to record transactions (of money, securities, contracts, and objects) without the mediation of an authorized body (government, employer, bank, notary). The first version of blockchain was bitcoin, initially only intended for financial transactions. Today, there are hundreds of variants, of which Ethereum is the most widely used.
The essence of blockchain is that the database of all transactions, the ledger, is stored on everyone's computer and is therefore accessible to every user. Miners ensure that a cryptocurrency is only used for one transaction or that a contract is not changed afterwards by one of the parties involved. Once most miners have approved a series of transactions, these transactions together form an unchangeable block.
Miners are eager to approve blocks, because whoever turns out to have done so first will receive a significant fee in cryptocurrency. Mining takes time and, above all, requires a huge amount of computing power and therefore energy. Alternative methods are diligently sought, such as a method that mainly concerns the reputation of the miner.

Blockchain stems from a drive for radical decentralization and reduction of the power of states, banks, and companies. That has worked out differently in practice. It is mainly governments and large companies in the US, Russia, China, South Korea, and the Netherlands, for example Albert Heijn, that are ensuring a steady increase.

As a means of securely storing transactions and recording mutual obligations, as in the case of digital autonomous organizations and smart contacts, blockchain has more potential than as a cryptocurrency. An absolute precondition is finding an alternative for the high consumption of energy.

Privacy
Blockchain grew out of the pursuit of escaping the ubiquitous eavesdropping enterprises and state. That is why dubious transactions are preferably handled with cryptocurrency. There is no complete anonymity, because cryptocurrency must be regularly exchanged for official money,

Autonomy
Perhaps more human autonomy comes into its own in blockchain than in any other system. For this it is necessary to know how it works well. This is all the truer in the case of non-financial transactions.

Safety
There are certain risks: The moment a miner has more than 50% of the computer capacity, it can completely corrupt the system. This situation is not imaginary. In 2019, there were two Chinese miners who together owned more than the half of computer capacity.

Power relations
Not much is known about the position of miners. There is a tendency towards ever-increasing concentration, which carries dangers about the sustainability of the system. As concentration increases, cryptocurrency holdings will also become increasingly skewed. After all, it is the miners who ensure the expansion of the available amount of money.

6. Digital platforms

Companies such as Amazon, Uber and Airbnb represent a new form of economic activity that has far-reaching consequences for other companies and urban life. They essentially consist of digital platforms that bring providers and consumers together.

Imagine you are in Amazon's virtual fitting room. You sit on a chair and a series of models pass by all of which exactly have your figure and size and maybe also your appearance. You can vary endlessly what they are wearing, until you have found or put together the outfit of your dreams. This can apply to all conceivable purchases, up to cars, including a driving simulator. With the push of a button, it is ordered and a few hours later the drone drops your order at your doorstep.
Digital platforms bring together a range of digital technology applications, such as Internet of Things, robotics, immersive technology, artificial intelligence and blockchain, to monitor the immense flows of goods and services.

Privacy
In the world of platforms, privacy is of little or no importance. Companies want to earn as much as possible from you and therefore collect masses of information about your behavior, preferences, and expenses. This in exchange for convenience and free gadgets such as navigation, search engines and email.

Autonomy
Some platforms are part of the sharing economy. They enable direct transactions between people and, as in the case of Airbnb, provide an unprecedented range of accommodations from which to choose.

Justice
Employees in platform companies often have poor labor conditions. For example, Uber drivers are followed, checked, and assessed all day long. In distribution centers, all remaining human actions are prescribed down to the minute.
In these companies, a large gap arises between the small inner circle of managers and technicians and the large outer circle of "contractors" that the company has nothing to do with and who have nothing to do with the company.

Power relations
These companies also contribute to widening the gap between rich and poor; the unprecedentedly large earnings go to top management and shareholders and, where possible, tax is avoided.
Platforms like Airbnb make it possible to distort competition on a large scale; the accommodations they rent out do not comply with the safety and tax rules that apply to regular companies.
The growth of platforms that have taken on monopolistic forms is the major cause of urban disruption without contributing to the costs it entails for the community.

Back to governance

In the previous articles, I have elaborated a framework for dealing with digitization in a socially responsible manner. Two lines of thought developed in this, that of the value of digital technology and that of its ethical use.

The value of digital technology
Digital technology must be given shape and content as one of the tools with which a city works towards an ecologically and socially sustainable future. To help articulate what such a future means, I introduced Kate Raworth's ideas about the donut economy. The design of a vision of the future must be a broadly supported democratic process, in which citizens also test the solution of their inclining problems against the sustainable prosperity of future generations and that of people elsewhere in the world.
The most important question when it comes to (digital) technology is therefore which (digital) technological tools contribute to the realization of a socially and ecologically sustainable city?

The ethical use of technology
In the world in which we try to realize the sustainable city of the future, digital technology is developing rapidly, in the fort place under the influence of commercial and political interests. Cities are confronted with these technologies through powerful smart city technology marketing.
The most important question for cities to ask is How do we assess available technologies from an ethical perspective.

In the government of cities, both trains of thought come together: Together, the answers to these questions can lead to the choice, design, and application of digital techniques as part of the realization of a vision for an ecologically and socially sustainable future of the city.

In the next two articles I examine how ethical principles are dealt with in practice. In the first article I will put Amsterdam in the spotlight and next, I look at how several municipalities are digitizing responsibly in the context of the Agenda stad.

The link below opens an overview of all published and future articles in this series.

Herman van den Bosch's picture #DigitalCity
Loulou Leupe, Content and Communications Manager at Closer Cities, posted

Solving Urban Challenges Together campaign

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As cities worldwide attract more and more people, public space is coming increasingly under pressure. Climate change and rapid urbanisation are intensifying the problems faced by people living in urban areas. As governments around the world look to build back better, we want to help them by sharing great ideas online.

Watch our short campaign video.

Why: creating greater impact
As a small country, the Netherlands is committed to achieving the world’s sustainable development and climate goals by sharing ideas and working together to overcome challenges. By sharing our knowledge and expertise with our international partners, and learning from others, the Netherlands can create greater impact. That's why we have devised a series of symbolic actions. This symbolic action 'Connected Cities' seeks to help urban areas develop resilience by sharing solutions online.

What: sharing urban ideas and best practices
We are calling on urban innovators, inventors, creatives, makers, startups, scale ups, do-gooders and anyone else with a great idea to share it via the Closer Cities platform. Closer Cities is a non-profit initiative supported by the Easmus Initiative Vital Cities Citizens, the Institute for Housing and Development Studies and Institute for Housing and Urban Development Studies and Leiden - Delft Erasmus Centre for BOLD Cities.

How: What you can do?
Each and every day, the most amazing and impactful developments are made in cities around the globe. But all too often they go unnoticed. This is a real pity, since many of these projects are worth sharing. We need to make great projects that the world should know about more visible. The idea or project needs to meet the following criteria:

  • Is this idea shareable and repeatable? 
  • Does it address the SDGs, climate change, wellbeing, diversity, youth, housing or education?
  • Or does it just make the city a better place?

Projects at any stage of development will be accepted. Remember no Dutch involvement is required. It’s all about cities helping other cities to improve. At the same time, you become part of a bigger movement helping the transition towards creating liveable cities. Closer Cities will conduct scientific research into which factors drive successful sharing. By sharing ideas online, we can help solve global challenges together. If you know about ideas that help achieve the sustainable development goals, address climate change or just make the world a better place, then we want to hear about it on the Closer Cities website.

How can you submit a project
Simply follow the steps and fill in the form (takes approximately 30 minutes).

Step 1. Go to the Closer Cities website
Step 2. Click on Share a project
Step 3. Fill in the questionnaire (project form) and share!

Make sure you submit the ideas by the end of January! The best five ideas will be selected for a prize awarded during an online webinar on 14 February 2022.

Online webinar
Want to find out more about urban solutions? Join our interactive online event on Monday 14 February 14.30 - 16.00 CET on Solving Urban Challenges Together. During the event, you will hear from city innovators, urban experts, scientists, and urban innovators pitching their ideas. Register here.

→ For more information, visit:Join us to solve urban challenges together
→ Or read Closer Cities'FAQs
Let's #solveurbanchallenges together

If projects from your network join the campaign, let us know which ones they are! Or if you have any questions or suggestions? Contact the NL Branding team.

Loulou Leupe's picture #Citizens&Living
Zoë Spaaij, Project manager , posted

De komst van Artificial Intelligence, wat nu?

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Het afgelopen jaar verschenen er tal van rapporten over digitalisering en technologisering. Maar wat kunnen we daarmee in 2022? Welke lessen kunnen we trekken voor de slimme stad? Welke ideeën kunnen ons gaan inspireren in dit nieuwe smartcityjaar?

Dit soort gesprekken voer je normaal gesproken als je elkaar tegenkomt tijdens een nieuwjaarsborrel, een congres of een andere netwerkbijeenkomst. Helaas kan dit nu even niet fysiek, maar gelukkig laat het digitale ons niet in de steek. Zo kunnen we toch met elkaar nieuwe kennis delen en verspreiden.

Daarom is de Future City Foundation op zoek gegaan naar de makers en bedenkers achter de rapporten. We gaan daarom in gesprek met columnist en hoogleraar Haroon Sheikh over wat we moeten doen kunstmatige intelligentie.

Wanneer? 9 februari van 9.00 – 10.00 uur
Kosten: Gratis

MELD U NU AAN

Artificial intelligence wordt in steeds meer sectoren gebruikt, maar wat moeten we ermee? Hoe kunnen we gebruik maken van deze nieuwe technologie en tegelijkertijd de risico’s ervan beperken? Welke kansen zijn er voor gemeentes?

Dat vragen we aan Haroon Sheikh, filosoof, bijzonder hoogleraar én projectcoördinator van het rapport over AI van de Wetenschappelijke Raad voor Regeringsbeleid. Wilt u weten hoe je AI zo inzet dat het een positieve bijdrage levert aan onze samenleving en hoe je misbruik door grote bedrijven voorkomt?

Heeft u een vraag aan Haroon Sheikh? Dan kunt u deze invullen in het aanmeldformulier. (We nemen dit mee in de voorbespreking en kunnen niet garanderen dat uw vraag wordt behandeld).

MELD U NU AAN

Meer weten?

Wilt u zich alvast inlezen? Sheikh’s columns zijn regelmatig te lezen in NRC Handelsblad, zoals in dit opiniestuk met Corien Prins (voorzitter van de WRR) over kunstmatige intelligentie. Lees een van zijn columns <b>hier</b>.

Of lees alvast het rapport van de Wetenschappelijke Raad voor Regeringsbeleid <b>hier</b> over de opgaves rondom AI waarin de Raad stelt dat Nederland niet goed is voorbereid op de ontwikkelingen van AI, waardoor kansen worden gemist én risico’s niet goed worden gezien.

Online event on Feb 9th
Herman van den Bosch, professor in management development , posted

10 Accessibility, software, digital infrastructure, and data. The quest for ethics

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The 10th episode in the series Better cities: The contribution of digital technology deals with the impact of ethical principles on four pillars of digitization: accessibility, software, infrastructure and data.

In the previous episode, I discussed design principles - guidelines and values - for digital technology. The report of the Rathenau Instituut Opwaarderen - Borgen van publieke waarden in de digitale samenleving concludes that government, industry, and society are still insufficiently using these principles. Below, I will consider their impact on four pillars of digitization: accessibility, software, infrastructure, and data. The next episodes will be focused on their impact on frequently used technologies.

Accessibility

Accessibility refers to the availability of high-speed Internet for everyone. This goes beyond just technical access. It also means that a municipality ensures that digital content is understandable and that citizens can use the options offered. Finally, everyone should have a working computer.

Free and safe Internet for all residents is a valuable amenity, including Wi-Fi in public areas. Leaving the latter to private providers such as the LinkNYC advertising kiosks in New York, which are popping up in other cities as well, is a bad thing. Companies such as Sidewalk Labs tempt municipalities by installing these kiosks for free. They are equipped with sensors that collect a huge amount of data from every device that connects to the Wi-Fi network: Not only the location and the operating system, but also the MAC address. With the help of analytical techniques, the route taken can be reconstructed. Combined with other public data from Facebook or Google, they provide insight into personal interests, sexual orientation, race, and political opinion of visitors.

The huge internet that connects everything and everyone also raises specters, which have to do with privacy-related uncertainty and forms of abuse, which appeared to include hacking of equipment that regulates your heartbeat.

That is why there is a wide search for alternatives. Worldwide, P2P neighborhood initiatives occur for a private network. Many of these are part of The Things Network. Instead of Wi-Fi, this network uses a protocol called LoRaWAN. Robust end-to-end encryption means that users don't have to worry about secure wireless hotspots, mobile data plans, or faltering Wi-Fi connectivity. The Things Network manages thousands of gateways and provides coverage to millions of people and a suite of open tools that enable citizens and entrepreneurs to build IoT applications at a low cost, with maximum security and that are easy to scale.

Software

Computer programs provide diverse applications, ranging from word processing to management systems. Looking for solutions that best fit the guidelines and ethical principles mentioned in the former episode, we quickly arrive at open-source software, as opposed to proprietary products from commercial providers. Not that the latter are objectionable in advance or that they are always more expensive. The most important thing to pay attention to is interchangeability (interoperability) with products from other providers to prevent you cannot get rid of them (lock in).

Open-source software offers advantages over proprietary solutions, especially if municipalities encourage city-wide use. Barcelona is leading the way in this regard. The city aims to fully self-manage its ICT services and radically improve digital public services, including privacy by design. This results in data sovereignty and in the use of free software, open data formats, open standards, interoperability and reusable applications and services.

Anyone looking for open-source software cannot ignore the Fiwarecommunity, which is similar in organization to Linux and consists of companies, start-ups and freelance developers and originated from an initiative of the EU. Fiware is providing open and sustainable software around public, royalty-free and implementation-driven standards.

Infrastructure

Computers are no longer the largest group of components of the digital infrastructure. Their number has been surpassed by so-called ubiquitous sensor networks (USN), such as smart meters, CCTV, microphones, and sensors. Sensor networks have the most diverse tasks, they monitor the environment (air quality, traffic density, unwanted visitors) and they are in machines, trains, and cars and even in people to transmit information about the functioning of vital components. Mike Matson calculated that by 2050 a city of 2 million inhabitants will have as many as a billion sensors, all connected by millions of kilometers of fiber optic cable or via Wi-Fi with data centers, carrier hotels (nodes where private networks converge) to eventually the Internet.

This hierarchically organized cross-linking is at odds with the guidelines and ethical principles formulated in the previous post. Internet criminals are given free rein and data breaches can spread like wildfires, like denial of service (DoS). In addition, the energy consumption is enormous, apart from blockchain. Edge computing is a viable alternative. The processing of the data is done locally and only results are uploaded on demand. This applies to sensors, mobile phones and possibly automated cars as well. A good example is the Array of Things Initiative. Ultimately, this will include 500 sensors, which will be installed in consultation with the population in Chicago. Their data is stored in each sensor apart and can be consulted online, if necessary, always involving several sensors and part of the data. Federated data systems are comparable. Data is stored in a decentralized way, but authorized users can use all data thanks to user interfaces.

Data

There is a growing realization that when it comes to data, not only quantity, but also quality counts. I will highlight some aspects.

Access to data
Personal data should only be available with permission from the owner. To protect this data, the EU project Decode proposes that owners can manage their data via blockchain technology. Many cities now have privacy guidelines, but only a few conduct privacy impact assessments as part of its data policy (p.18).

Quality
There is growing evidence that much of the data used in artificial intelligence as “learning sets” is flawed. This had already become painfully clear from facial recognition data in which minority groups are disproportionately represented. New research shows that this is also true in the field of healthcare. This involves data cascades, a sum of successive errors, the consequences of which only become clear after some time. Data turned out to be irrelevant, incomplete, incomparable, and even manipulated.

Data commons
Those for whom high-quality data is of great importance will pay extra attention to its collection. In. this case, initiating a data common is a godsend. Commons are shared resources managed by empowered communities based on mutually agreed and enforced rules. An example is the Data and Knowledge Hub for Healthy Urban Living (p.152), in which governments, companies, environmental groups and residents collect data for the development of a healthy living environment, using a federated data system. These groups are not only interested in the data, but also in the impact of its application.

Open date
Many cities apply the 'open by default' principle and make most of the data public, although the user-friendliness and efficiency sometimes leave something to be desired. Various data management systems are available as an open-source portal. One of the most prominent ones is CKAN, administered by the Open Knowledge Foundation. It contains tools for managing, publishing, finding, using, and sharing data collections. It offers an extensive search function and allows the possibility to view data in the form of maps, graphs, and tables. There is an active community of users who continue to develop the system and adapt it locally.

To make the data accessible, some cities also offer training courses and workshops. Barcelona's Open Data Challenge is an initiative for secondary school students that introduces them to the city's vast dat collection.

Safety
As the size of the collected data, the amount of entry points and the connectivity on the Internet increase, the security risks also become more severe. Decentralization, through edge computing and federated storage with blockchain technology, certainly contribute to security. But there is still a long way to go. Only half of the cities has a senior policy officer in this area. Techniques for authentication, encryption and signing that together form the basis for attribute-based identity are applied only incidentally. This involves determining identity based on several characteristics of a user, such as function and location. Something completely different is Me and my shadow, a project that teaches Internet users to minimize their own trail and thus their visibility to Internet criminality.

There is still a world to win before the guidelines and ethical principles mentioned in the previous episode are sufficiently met. I emphasize again not to over-accentuate concepts such as 'big data', 'data-oriented policy' and the size of data sets. Instead, it is advisable to re-examine the foundations of scientific research. First and foremost is knowledge of the domain (1), resulting in research questions (2), followed by the choice of an appropriate research method (3), defining the type of data to be collected (4), the collection of these data (5), and finally their statistical processing to find evidence for substantiated hypothetical connections (6). The discussion of machine learning in the next episode will reveal that automatic processing of large data sets is mainly about discovering statistical connections, and that can have dire consequences.

Follow the link below to find one of the previous episodes or see which episodes are next, and this one for the Dutch version.

Herman van den Bosch's picture #DigitalCity
Tom de Munck, Content Marketeer at Amsterdam University of Applied Sciences, posted

Digital Society Talk Show & Showcase

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At the Digital Society Showcase (DSS) we proudly share how our projects and courses activate a new generation’s potential to positively impact the digital transformation of society. Find out how to obtain a responsible, inclusive mindset, how to integrate technology in society and how to design for the UN Sustainable Development Goals (SDG’s).

Programme

16:00 CET | start of live talkshow
16:30 CET | opening expo (ongoing)
17:00 CET | closing the live talkshow
18:15 CET | closing the expo

Live Talk Show

At 16:00 we kick-off with an interactive and live talkshow about Transformational Leadership, Learning Revolution and Sustainability, Diversity and Digital transformation.

With topic experts we discuss the following questions:

  • What is needed to lead the transformation of todays world and digital society to become more inclusive, sustainable and living-future-proof?
  • How is DSS changing the learning game from within the AUAS? What impact do we think education has on the needed transformation of crumbling systems around us?
  • How is the AUAS growing these topics within the organisation, education and research? And how is DSS impacting these topics via our programs and products?

Discover the 7 projects

In 20 weeks an international, highly talented group of trainees worked on finding solutions for the most urgent challenges that relate to the digital transformation of society. In multidisciplinary teams they worked with our project partners, under the guidance of a ‘Digital Transformation Designer’, their track community, and the rest of the Digital Society School team.

During the showcase the teams will show you the prototypes and explain how they contributed to the Digital Transformation of Society and the Sustainable Development Goals. The different tracks (thematic programs) will also present themselves and discuss how design, tech and social innovation can have a positive impact on sustainable development.

Discover more about the projects on our website.

Tom de Munck's picture Online event on Jan 19th
Herman van den Bosch, professor in management development , posted

5. Collect meaningful data and stay away from dataism

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The fifth episode of the series Better cities: The role of technology is about the sense and nonsense of big data. Data is the new oil is the worst cliché of the big data hype yet. Even worse than data-driven policy. In this article, I investigate - with digital twins as a thread - what the contribution of data can be to urban policy and how dataism, a religion that takes over policy making itself, can be prevented (must read: Harari: Homo Deus).

I am a happy user of a Sonos sound system. Nevertheless, the helpdesk must be involved occasionally. Recently, it knew within five minutes that my problem was the result of a faulty connection cable between the modem and the amplifier. As it turned out, the helpdesk was able to remotely generate a digital image of the components of my sound system and their connections and saw that the cable in question was not transmitting any signal. A simple example of a digital twin. I was happy with it. But where is the line between the sense and nonsense of collecting masses of data?

What is a digital twin.

A digital twin is a digital model of an object, product, or process. In my training as a social geographer, I had a lot to do with maps, the oldest form of 'twinning'. Maps have laid the foundation for GIS technology, which in turn is the foundation of digital twins. Geographical information systems relate data based on geographical location and provide insight into their coherence in the form of a model. If data is permanently connected to reality with the help of sensors, then the dynamics in the real world and those in the model correspond and we speak of a 'digital twin'. Such a dynamic model can be used for simulation purposes, monitoring and maintenance of machines, processes, buildings, but also for much larger-scale entities, for example the electricity grid.

From data to insight

Every scientist knows that data is indispensable, but also that there is a long way to go before data leads to knowledge and insight. That road starts even before data is collected. The first step is assumptions about the essence of reality and thus the method of knowing it. There has been a lot of discussion about this within the philosophy of science, from which two points of view have been briefly crystallized, a systems approach and a complexity approach.

The systems approach assumes that reality consists of a stable series of actions and reactions in which law-like connections can be sought. Today, almost everyone assumes that this only applies to physical and biological phenomena. Yet there is also talk of social systems. This is not a question of law-like relationships, but of generalizing assumptions about human behavior at a high level of aggregation. The homo economicus is a good example. Based on such assumptions, conclusions can be drawn about how behavior can be influenced.

The complexity approach sees (social) reality as the result of a complex adaptive process that arises from countless interactions, which - when it comes to human actions - are fed by diverse motives. In that case it will be much more difficult to make generic statements at a high level of aggregation and interventions will have a less predictable result.

Traffic models

Traffic policy is a good example to illustrate the distinction between a process and a complexity approach. Simulation using a digital twin in Chattanooga of the use of flexible lane assignment and traffic light phasing showed that congestion could be reduced by 30%. Had this experiment been carried out, the result would probably have been very different. Traffic experts note time and again that every newly opened road becomes full after a short time, while the traffic picture on other roads hardly changes. In econometrics this phenomenon is called induced demand. In a study of urban traffic patterns between 1983 and 2003, economists Gilles Duranton and Matthew Turner found that car use increases proportionally with the growth of road capacity. The cause only becomes visible to those who use a complexity approach: Every road user reacts differently to the opening or closing of a road. That reaction can be to move the ride to another time, to use a different road, to ride with someone else, to use public transport or to cancel the ride.

Carlos Gershenson, a Mexican computer specialist, has examined traffic behavior from a complexity approach and he concludes that self-regulation is the best way to tackle congestion and to maximize the capacity of roads. If the simulated traffic changes in Chattanooga had taken place in the real world, thousands of travelers would have changed their driving behavior in a short time. They had started trying out the smart highway, and due to induced demand, congestion there would increase to old levels in no time. Someone who wants to make the effect of traffic measures visible with a digital twin should feed it with results of research into the induced demand effect, instead of just manipulating historical traffic data.

The value of digital twins

Digital twins prove their worth when simulating physical systems, i.e. processes with a parametric progression. This concerns, for example, the operation of a machine, or in an urban context, the relationship between the amount of UV light, the temperature, the wind (speed) and the number of trees per unit area. In Singapore, for example, digital twins are being used to investigate how heat islands arise in the city and how their effect can be reduced. Schiphol Airporthas a digital twin that shows all moving parts at the airport, such as roller conveyors and stairs. This enables technicians to get to work immediately in the event of a malfunction. It is impossible to say in advance whether the costs of building such a model outweigh the benefits. Digital twins often develop from small to large, driven by proven needs.

Boston also developed a digital twin of part of the city in 2017, with technical support from ESRI. A limited number of processes have been merged into a virtual 3D model. One is the shadowing caused by the height of buildings. One of the much-loved green spaces in the city is the Boston Common. For decades, it has been possible to limit the development of high-rise buildings along the edges of the park and thus to limit shade. Time and again, project developers came up with new proposals for high-rise buildings. With the digital twin, the effect of the shadowing of these buildings can be simulated in different weather conditions and in different seasons (see image above). The digital twin can be consulted online, so that everyone can view these and other effects of urban planning interventions at home.

Questions in advance

Three questions precede the construction of a digital twin, and data collection in general. In the first place, what the user wants to achieve with it, then which processes will be involved and thirdly, which knowledge is available of these processes and their impact. Chris Andrews, an urban planner working on the ESRI ArcGIS platform, emphasizes the need to limit the number of elements in a digital twin and to pre-calculate the relationship between them: To help limit complexity, the number of systems modeled in a digital twin should likely be focused on the problems the twin will be used to solve.

Both the example of traffic forecasts in Chattanooga, the formation of heat islands in Singapore and the shadowing of the Boston Common show that raw data is insufficient to feed a digital twin. Instead, data are used that are the result of scientific research, after the researcher has decided whether a systems approach or a complexity approach is appropriate. In the words of Nigel Jacob, former Chief Technology Officer in Boston: For many years now, we've been talking about the need to become data-driven… But there's a step beyond that. We need to make the transition to being science-driven in ...... It's not enough to be data mining to look for patterns. We need to understand root causes of issues and develop policies to address these issues.

Digital twins are valuable tools. But if they are fed with raw data, they provide at best insight into statistical connections and every scientist knows how dangerous it is to draw conclusions from that: Trash in, trash out.

If you prefer the Dutch version of the Better cities series, find an overview of the already published episodes via the link below.

Herman van den Bosch's picture #SmartCityAcademy
Gijs Boerwinkel, Head of communications at Waag, posted

Wandelen in Amsterdam langs de digitale sporen van de slimme stad

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Wandel op 24 april mee langs de digitale sporen in Amsterdam en ga in gesprek over data, sensoren, en camera’s in de openbare ruimte. Kan een stad slim zijn of moeten we juist inzetten op slimme burger; smart citizens?

Wat wordt er aan data verzameld en wat gebeurt daarmee? Kun je je nog onbespied wanen in de publieke ruimte van mijn stad? Hoe ziet de ideale digitale stad van de toekomst er volgens jou uit?

Digitale infrastructuur

Ooit bestond de stad uit bakstenen en staal, gebouwen en wegen. Maar steeds meer is deze infrastructuur vervlochten met een digitaal netwerk dat alles verbindt. Deze digitale sporen vind je overal. Ze helpen ons de stad en haar inwoners steeds verder in kaart te brengen. Tijdens de smart citizen-wandeling kom je deze sporen tegen. Van slimme bewegwijzering die ons leidt, tot camera’s die ons volgen. Je gaat in gesprek over de relatie van bewoners met de technologie in de stad en wordt uitgedaagd je aannames te bevragen en toekomstideëen te delen.

Wanneer: 24 januari '22
Starttijden: 14:00 uur en 15:00 uur
Startpunt: Amsterdam CS, IJ-zijde West
Eindpunt: Tolhuistuin
Nodig: goede schoenen, opgeladen telefoon, flesje water
Afstand en duur wandeling: 
Amsterdam: 
5,3 km
 - 1 uur en drie kwartier

Meer informatie

Bij het startpunt van de wandeling krijg je informatie over de wandeling en ontvang je een wandelpakket met een routekaart en gespreksmateriaal voor tijdens de wandeling. We starten gezamenlijk, daarna wandel je in kleine groepjes, met max 4 mensen. Bij het eindpunt word je ontvangen met koffie en thee. Je kunt je aanmelden met vrienden, of meewandelen met iemand die je nog niet kent en je laten verrassen!

Gijs Boerwinkel's picture Meet-up on Apr 24th
Herman van den Bosch, professor in management development , posted

2. Scare off the monster behind the curtain: Big Tech’s monopoly

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This post is about the omnipotence of Big Tech. So far, resistance mainly results in regulation of its effects. The core of the problem, the monopoly position of the technology giants, is only marginally touched. What is needed is a strict antitrust policy and a government that once again takes a leading role in setting the technology agenda.

A cause of concern

 In its recent report, the Dutch Rathenau Institute calls the state of digital technology a cause for concern. The institute advocates a fair data economy and a robust, secure and available Internet for everyone. This is not the case now. In fact, we are getting further and further away from this. The risks are pressing more each day: Inscrutable algorithms, deepfakes and political micro-targeting, inner-city devastation through online shopping, theft of trade secrets, unbridled data collection by Google, Amazon and Facebook, poorly paid taxi drivers by Uber and other service providers of the gig economy, the effect of Airbnb on the hotel industry and the energy consumption of bitcoin and blockchain.

The limits of legislation

Numerous publications are calling on the government to put an end to the growing abuse of digital technology. In his must read 'the New Digital Deal' Bas Boorsma states: In order to deploy digitalization and to manage platforms for the greater good of the individual and society as a whole, new regulatory approaches will be required… (p. 46) . That is also the view of the Rathenau Institute, which lists three spearheads for a digitization strategy: Strong legislative frameworks and supervision, value-based digital innovation based on critical parliamentary debate and a say in this for citizens and professionals.

More than growing inconvenience

In recent years, the European Commission has launched a wide range of legislative proposals, such as the Digital Services Act package, the Digital Market Act and the General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR). However, these measures do not get to the kernel of the problem. The near-monopoly position of Big Tech is the proverbial monster behind the curtain. The Rathenau Institute speaks in furtitive terms of "the growing inconvenience" of reliance on American and Chinese tech giants. Even the International Monetary Fund is clearer in stating that the power of Big Tech inhibits innovation and investment and increases income inequality. Due to the power of the big technology companies, society is losing its grip on technology.

Surveillance capitalisme

To curb the above-mentioned risks, the problem must first be named  and measures must then be tailored accordingly. This is done in two recent books, namely Shoshana Zuboff's 'The Age of Surveillance Capitalism: The Fight for a Human Future at the New Frontier of Power' (2019) and Cory Doctorow's 'How to destroy surveillance capitalism' (2021). Zuboff describes in detail how Google, Amazon and Facebook collect data with only one goal, to entice citizens to buy goods and services: Big Tech's product is persuasion. The services — social media, search engines, maps, messaging, and more — are delivery systems for persuasion.

Big tech's monopoly

The unprecedented power of Big Tech is a result of the fact that these companies have become almost classic monopolies. Until the 1980s, the US had strict antitrust legislation: the Sherman's act, notorious for big business. Ronald Reagan quickly wiped it out in his years as president, and Margareth Thatcher did the same in the UK, Brian Mulroney in Canada and Helmut Kohl in Germany. While Sherman saw monopolies as a threat to the free market, Reagan believed that government interference threatens the free market. Facebook joins in if it sees itself as a 'natural monopoly': You want to be on a network where your friends are also. But you could also reach your friends if there were more networks that are interoperable. Facebook has used all economic, technical and legal means to combat the latter, including takeover of potential competitors: Messenger, Instagram and WhatsApp.

In the early 21st century, there was still a broad belief that emerging digital technology could lead to a better and more networked society. Bas Boorsma: The development of platforms empowered start-ups, small companies and professionals. Many network utopians believed the era of 'creative commons' had arrived and with it, a non-centralized and highly digital form of 'free market egalitarianism' (New Digital Deal, p.52). Nothing has come of this: Digitalization-powered capitalism now possesses a speed, agility and rawness that is unprecedented (New Digital Deal, p.54). Even the startup community is becoming one big R&D lab for Big Tech. Many startups hope to be acquired by one of the tech giants and then cash in on millions. As a result, Big Tech is on its way to acquire a dominant position in urban development, the health sector and education, in addition to the transport sector.

Antitrust legislation

Thanks to its monopoly position, Big Tech can collect unlimited data, even if European legislation imposes restrictions and occasional fines. After all, a lot of data is collected without citizens objecting to it. Mumford had already realized this in 1967: Many consumers see these companies not only as irresistible, but also ultimately beneficial. These two conditions are the germ of what he called the megatechnics bribe.

The only legislation that can break the power of Big Tech is a strong antitrust policy, unbundling the companies, an absolute ban on acquisitions and rigorous taxation.

Technology agenda

Technology does not develop autonomously. At the moment, Big Tech is indisputably setting the technology agenda in the Western Hemisphere. China is a different story. With Mariana Mazzocato, I believe that governments should take back control of technological development, as they did until the end of the last century. Consider the role of institutions such as DARPA in the US, the Fraunhofer Institute in Germany and TNO in the Netherlands. Democratic control is an absolute precondition!

In the chapter 'Digitally just cities' in my e-book 'Cities of the future: Always humane, smart where it helps' (link below), I show, among other things, what Facebook, Amazon and Google could look like after a possible unbundling.

Herman van den Bosch's picture #SmartCityAcademy
Amsterdam Smart City, Connector of opportunities at Amsterdam Smart City, posted

Event: Innovatie in Amsterdam @ Pakhuis de Zwijger

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Hoe versterken we innovatie in de metropoolregio Amsterdam?
De uitdagingen waar we voor staan, zijn immens. We kunnen het alleen oplossen door dingen fundamenteel anders te doen, innovatie dus. Niet alleen door bestaande partijen, maar ook door startups en andere nieuwkomers. Nieuwe technieken zijn daarin essentieel. Daarmee kunnen we zorgen dat mensen anders met energie omgaan en veel beter onze grondstofstromen plannen. In de afgelopen tijd zijn deze verandering erg snel gegaan. Wat willen we hiervan behouden? En hoe zorgen we dat innovatie echt waarde toevoegt en bijdraagt aan een leefbare bruisende stad voor iedereen? Hoe zorgen we dat we tijdig de goede nieuwe ideeën spotten en groot maken?

Sprekers:
Leonie van den Beuken Amsterdam Smart City
Zita Pels Provincie Noord-Holland

De overige sprekers en meer informatie volgen snel. Aanmelden kan via de website van Pakhuis de Zwijger.

Amsterdam Smart City's picture Meet-up on Nov 12th
Joppe van Driel, Circular economy at AMS Institute, posted

Vacature AMS: programma ontwikkelaar "De Ideale Monitor"

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Amsterdam Institute for Advanced Metropolitan Solutions (AMS Institute) zoekt een programma ontwikkelaar met passie voor duurzaamheid & data. Een verbinder, die mensen en inhoud kan samenbrengen, en onderzoek kan koppelen aan maatschappij.

Wil jij bijdragen aan het ontwikkelen van de monitoring en sturing van de duurzaamheidsdoelstellingen van Amsterdam, en wil je opereren op het snijvlak van beleid, maatschappij en data-gedreven onderzoek?

AMS Institute werkt samen met de gemeente Amsterdam en andere partners in de MRA aan het monitoren en meten van de verschillende duurzaamheidsdoelstellingen van de stad. Denk aan energietransitie, circulaire economie, klimaatadaptatie, mobiliteit, donuteconomie. Het AMS Institute en de gemeente slaan de handen in elkaar om alle doelen, indicatoren en projecten in kaart te brengen, hun vooruitgang te meten en te identificeren waar de grootste potenties tot verbetering zitten.

Wij zoeken een ambitieuze en proactieve projectleider om dit meerjarig programma te leiden. Je werkt mee aan een van de grootste en vooruitstrevende initiatieven op het gebied van monitoring en sturing van de duurzame stad; een mooie kans om impact te maken.

Joppe van Driel's picture #Citizens&Living
Beth Njeri, Digital Communications Manager at Metabolic, posted

Building back better with a systemic approach

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As the world grapples with vaccinations, variants, and how to return to "normal", it’s a good time to reflect on whether or not we are fully equipped to prevent future shocks.

Building true resilience means addressing the systemic issues that make our world increasingly fragile, by understanding the deeper structures and mental models at the root of a problem to create lasting solutions.

Check out our article done by Metabolic last year about building back better.

#circulareconomy

Beth Njeri's picture #Citizens&Living
NEMO Science Museum, posted

Event: Luchtdata

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Hoe schoon is de lucht in Nederland, in Amsterdam en in de buurt? In deze workshop van het RIVM ga je aan de slag met data over luchtverontreiniging door fijnstof, stikstof en koolstofdioxide. Wat betekenen deze data, hoe zoek je ze op en wat kun je ermee doen?

NEMO Science Museum's picture Masterclass / workshop on Nov 6th
NEMO Science Museum, posted

Take control of your data

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Wat zijn de beste privacy-instellingen voor jouw apparaten? Hoe onthoud je al je wachtwoorden? En wat zijn de beste trucs om zo min mogelijke persoonlijke data te delen? In deze workshop ontdek je hoe je je eigen smartphone of laptop instelt zodat je privacy zo goed mogelijk gewaarborgd blijft.

NEMO Science Museum's picture Masterclass / workshop on Oct 14th
NEMO Science Museum, posted

Ontwerp de wereld van morgen

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Betalen we in de toekomst onze boodschappen met persoonlijke data? Bepalen algoritmes wat we het best kunnen eten? Of gaan we alleen nog maar op virtualreality-vakantie? Ontwerp, teken, knip en plak je eigen ideale toekomstscenario onder leiding van moderator en hoofdredacteur van NEMO Kennislink Leon Heuts, data-kunstenaar Roos Groothuizen en toekomstexperts Jessica van der Schalk en Sjoerd Bakker.

NEMO Science Museum's picture Lecture / presentation on Oct 7th
NEMO Science Museum, posted

Cybersecurity

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Hoe spoor je cybercriminelen op? Hoe werkt hacken? En hoe zorg je ervoor dat jouw computer en telefoon veilig blijven? Gina Doekhie is cybercrime-specialiste en digitaal detective. In deze lezing vertelt zij je alles over digitale crimescenes en de duistere plekken van het internet.

NEMO Science Museum's picture Lecture / presentation on Sep 23rd
NEMO Science Museum, posted

Van spijkerschrift tot codetaal

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Hoe verzamelden, gebruikten en bewaarden mensen duizenden jaren geleden data? Wat werd er gedaan om datafraude te voorkomen? En wat is het verschil met het datagebruik van nu? Tijdens deze workshop vertelt Rients de Boer (Universiteit Leiden) je alles over Ancient Big Data en maak je zelf een kleitablet met een persoonlijke boodschap in spijkerschrift.

NEMO Science Museum's picture Masterclass / workshop on Sep 16th