#User involvement

Topic within Smart City Academy
Neeltje Pavicic, Public Tech, Participation, Community Management at Gemeente Amsterdam, posted

Digitale rechten in tijden van Corona - film en nagesprek

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Amsterdam is een van de steden die actief werk maakt van de digitale rechten van haar inwoners als de Coronacrisis toeslaat. In een wereld die ongekend anders is, blijkt dat het vechten voor digitale rechten nog even zo van belang blijkt als voorheen. Misschien wel urgenter.  
De film start om 19u45 en duurt tot 20u15. Na de film gaan we met elkaar en de hoofdpersonen uit de film in gesprek. Voor wie wil, is er van 21 tot 23u een borrel.

Aanmelden via https://www.amsterdam.nl/formulieren/innovatie/film-gesprek-corona-digitale-rechten-8/

Deze filmvertoning maakt deel uit van de week rond digitale rechten (5-11 december) in Amsterdam:

Meet-up on Dec 8th
NEMO Science Museum, posted

Lezing - Eerste hulp bij energie besparen

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Foto: Pixabay

Eerste hulp bij energie besparen

Is jouw energierekening ook zo hoog en ben je benieuwd naar hoe je jouw verbruik kan verminderen? In deze lezing verteld Elisah Pals, oprichter van Zero Waste Nederland, hoe je het klimaat én je portemonnee een handje helpt door te leven zonder afval. Pals geeft je tips en tricks hoe je je ecologische voetafdruk verkleint, minder CO2 uitstoot, meer zelf maakt en minder weggooit. Goed voor het klimaat én je portemonnee. Daarnaast vertelt ze over het ontstaan van Zero Waste Nederland en hoe zij zelf al 5 jaar lang geen nieuwe spullen kocht.

Over Elisah Pals

Elisah Pals is klimaatpsycholoog en oprichter van Zero Waste Nederland. Ze heeft een fascinatie voor menselijk gedrag en hoe je dat op een positieve manier kunt beïnvloeden.
Elisah Pals - De Studio van NEMO

Tickets

Voor een bezoek aan dit programma in De Studio reserveer je een apart ticket. De toegangsprijs is € 7,50. Het programma is inclusief een bezoek aan de tentoonstelling Energy Junkies. Reserveer hier ticket.

Locatie en tijd

De lezing start om 20.00 uur en duurt ongeveer 1,5 uur. Voorafgaand aan de lezing kun je vanaf 19.00 uur de tentoonstelling Energy Junkies bezoeken.

De Studio van NEMO is een extra locatie van NEMO Science Museum op het Marineterrein in Amsterdam. De programmering is speciaal voor volwassenen. Adres: Kattenburgerstraat 5, gebouw 027A in Amsterdam. Volg de bordjes vanaf de hoofdingang aan de Kattenburgerstraat.

NEMO Science Museum's picture Lecture / presentation on Mar 16th
NEMO Science Museum, posted

Dialoog/game - Climate Privilege Walk

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Foto: Pexels - Susanne Jutzeler

Climate Privilege Walk

De gevolgen van klimaatverandering treffen iedereen op een andere manier. En gezinnen met een hoger inkomen kunnen zich vaak beter beschermen tegen de negatieve effecten van milieuvervuiling.

In de Climate Privilege Walk ontdek je hoe het is om in de schoenen van een ander te staan. Op basis van jouw persoonlijke situatie beantwoord je verschillende vragen over energie en klimaat. Heb jij ooit een rekening niet kunnen betalen door de stijgende energieprijzen? Of moet de verwarming soms hoger zetten omdat het tocht in je huis? Maak jij je zorgen omdat iedereen in 2050 van het gas af moet?Afhankelijk van je antwoord op een vraag zet je een stap naar voren, blijf je staan, of zet je een stap naar achter. Aan het eind van de Climate Privilege Walk wordt door de afstand tussen de deelnemers duidelijk hoe groot de ongelijkheid is.

Over Sarita Bajnath

De Climate Privilege Walk wordt verzorgd door Sarita Bajnath. Zij is trainer, spreker en motivator op het gebied van inclusie, diversiteit en dialoog. Ze werkt zowel nationaal als internationaal voor bedrijven, NGO's, universiteiten en hogescholen.

Tickets

Voor een bezoek aan dit programma in De Studio reserveer je een apart ticket. De toegangsprijs is € 7,50. Het programma is inclusief een bezoek aan de tentoonstelling Energy Junkies. Reserveer hier ticket.

Locatie en tijd

De privilege walk start om 20.00 en 21.30 uur en duurt ongeveer 1 uur. In de ticketportal kun je het tijdstip kiezen wat jou het beste uitkomt. Voorafgaand aan de activiteit kun je vanaf 19.00 en 21.00 uur de tentoonstelling Energy Junkies bezoeken.

De Studio van NEMO is een extra locatie van NEMO Science Museum op het Marineterrein in Amsterdam. De programmering is speciaal voor volwassenen. Adres: Kattenburgerstraat 5, gebouw 027A in Amsterdam. Volg de bordjes vanaf de hoofdingang aan de Kattenburgerstraat.

NEMO Science Museum's picture Meet-up on Mar 2nd
NEMO Science Museum, posted

Futures Literacy workshop - Dé toekomst bestaat niet!

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Foto: Pixabay

Futures Literacy Workshop - De toekomst bestaat niet!

Nadenken over de toekomst beïnvloedt de beslissingen die we nu maken. En als we het hebben over klimaatverandering, denken we vaak aan de toekomst. Daarom is het de hoogste tijd om eens onder de loep te nemen op wat voor manieren we een toekomstbeeld kunnen creëren en wat daarbij de valkuilen zijn.

Er zijn verschillende manieren om over de toekomst na te denken. Van nature zijn we geneigd om één dominant toekomstbeeld te gebruiken. Aan de hand van dat toekomstbeeld maken we vervolgens beslissingen in het heden. Het probleem is dat we andere mogelijkheden daardoor (te) snel over het hoofd zien en steeds dezelfde keuzes blijven maken.

Tijdens deze avond maak je kennis met de 21th skills van de Futures Literacy methode die een andere manier van denken introduceert. Hoe denken wij dat de toekomst eruitziet? En hoe hopen we hoe die eruitziet? De antwoorden op deze twee vragen zijn doorgaans heel verschillend, maar waarom is dat zo?

Door de onzekerheid van de toekomst te omarmen kun je eigenaarschap krijgen over iets dat er nog niet is. Dit klinkt bijna paradoxaal of onmogelijk. Want hoe kun je een toekomst die nog niet bestaat gebruiken om nu te innoveren? Wat gebeurt er als wij open staan de toekomst te onderzoeken en ons niet laten verlammen door complexiteit en aannames uit het heden?

Wil jij ook leren om opener over de toekomst na te denken? Kom dan naar deze bijzondere avond in De Studio van NEMO. Het proces en de vraagstukken die tijdens deze avond voorbijkomen worden in beeld gebracht door een illustrator en krijg je ook nagestuurd.

Over Loes Damhof en Futures Literacy

Tijdens de workshop kom je op een laagdrempelige en speels manier in aanraking met de Futures Literacy methode die door UNESCO is uitgeroepen tot dé essentiële vaardigheid die nodig is voor onze 21e eeuwse problematiek.

Binnen de leerstoel Futures Literacy wordt onderzoek gedaan naar de manier waarop we kijken naar de toekomst. Loes Damhof, introduceerde deze methode in het Nederlandse hoger onderwijs en leidt het Futures Literacy team aan de Hanzehoogschool in Groningen. Speciaal voor deze avond reist ze af naar Amsterdam om deze nieuwe methode in een workshop ook beschikbaar te stellen aan de bezoekers van De Studio.
Loes Damhof - De Studio van NEMO
Foto: DigiDaan

Tickets

Voor een bezoek aan dit programma in De Studio reserveer je een apart ticket. De toegangsprijs is € 7,50. Het programma is inclusief een bezoek aan de tentoonstelling Energy Junkies. Reserveer hier ticket.

Locatie en tijd

De workshop start om 20.00 uur en duurt ongeveer 2 uur. Voorafgaand aan de activiteit kun je vanaf 19.00 uur de tentoonstelling Energy Junkies bezoeken.

De Studio van NEMO is een extra locatie van NEMO Science Museum op het Marineterrein in Amsterdam. De programmering is speciaal voor volwassenen. Adres: Kattenburgerstraat 5, gebouw 027A in Amsterdam. Volg de bordjes vanaf de hoofdingang aan de Kattenburgerstraat.

NEMO Science Museum's picture Masterclass / workshop on Feb 16th
NEMO Science Museum, posted

Theater - SNIKHEET

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Foto: DigiDaan

SNIKHEET

Theatergroep Parels voor de Zwijnen komt naar De Studio van NEMO. Na het ontroerende én feestelijke De Koningin van de Voedselbank en VETARM! spelen ze nu SNIKHEET. Een voorstelling over alweer een ‘hot’ item: we moeten als de sodemieter van het gas af. Maar de energietransitie verdeelt Amsterdamse bewoners. Mensen met een kleine beurs kunnen de energierekening nu al amper betalen. Dus hoe moet dat dan straks? Daartegenover staan vooruitstrevende bewoners die de plannen niet groen genoeg vinden en voor wie het allemaal veel te langzaam gaat.

Al die Amsterdammers komen tijdens een inspraakavond bij elkaar. Dat levert een stevige, maar ook een hilarische clash op tussen bevlogen klimaatactivisten en opgewonden dwarsliggers, vleeseters en veganisten, optimistische aanpakkers en boze gedupeerden, goedbedoelende beleidsmakers en wantrouwende burgers. Het belooft een hete avond te worden, vol pittige standpunten, woeste meningen, slimme gedachten en lukrake ideeën. Maar ook met rauwe levensverhalen die zorgen voor verbroedering.

Over Parels voor de Zwijnen

‘Het gewone leven is te mooi om aan voorbij te gaan’. Dit typeert het uitgangspunt van theatergroep Parels voor de Zwijnen. Vanuit de overtuiging dat het uitvergroten van aspecten uit het dagelijks leven van mensen van een grote theatrale schoonheid is. In de voorstellingen spelen acteurs samen met mensen die in werkelijkheid ook in de verbeelde situatie zitten. De voorstellingen worden bij voorkeur gespeeld op plekken die bij deze mensen horen, en die ook het publiek vaak een nieuwe ervaring bieden.
SNIKHEET in de Studio van NEMO - foto Sonja de Bruin
Foto: Sonja de Bruin

Tickets

Voor een bezoek aan dit programma in De Studio reserveer je een apart ticket. De toegangsprijs is € 7,50. Het programma is inclusief een bezoek aan de tentoonstelling Energy Junkies. Reserveer hier ticket.

Locatie en tijd

De voorstelling start om 20.00 uur en duurt ongeveer 1,5 uur. Voorafgaand aan de activiteit kun je vanaf 19.00 uur de tentoonstelling Energy Junkies bezoeken.

De Studio van NEMO is een extra locatie van NEMO Science Museum op het Marineterrein in Amsterdam. De programmering is speciaal voor volwassenen. Adres: Kattenburgerstraat 5, gebouw 027A in Amsterdam. Volg de bordjes vanaf de hoofdingang aan de Kattenburgerstraat.

NEMO Science Museum's picture Meet-up on Feb 2nd
Maartje Luinenburg, Digital Marketing & Communication at University of Amsterdam (UvA), posted

Masterclass Toekomst van de Stad

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In deze masterclass denken we na en discussiëren over oplossingsrichtingen voor diverse uitdagingen. We proberen we ons een voorstelling te maken van de stad van straks. Geen toekomstvoorspellingen, maar toekomstvoorstellingen.

We gaan o.a. in op de onderwerpen

✓ Wat maakt een stad een stad?
✓ Wat is stedelijkheid?
✓ Hoe ontwikkelen steden zich, groeien ze allemaal?
✓ Bouwen we in of buiten de stad?
✓ Wie wonen er nu in de steden en wie kan er straks nog wonen?
✓ Wat voor werk is er nu in de steden en wat voor werk in de toekomst?
✓ Hoe houden we steden veilig in onzekere tijden?
✓ Is de stad voor de yup en expat of kan Jan Modaal er ook nog terecht?
✓ Is de stad nog de “emancipatiemotor”?
✓ Hoe “smart” wordt de stad?
✓ Mogen auto’s straks nog in de stad?
✓ Hoe krijgen we de stad duurzaam?
✓ Blijft de stad bestuurbaar? Hoe houden we “de boel bij elkaar”?
✓ Welke dynamiek kennen stedelijke netwerken?
✓ Wat gaat dat betekenen voor stedelingen/niet stedelingen?
✓ Oplossingsrichtingen voor de knelpunten met woningmarkt, mobiliteit, duurzaamheid, klimaat, onder controle krijgen van de stedelijke arbeidsmarkt/evenwichtigheid.
✓ Nadenken over / input voor beleidsvorming over stedelijke vraagstukken/regionaal economische vraagstukken (stad voor iedereen - of ga er buiten wonen en regel goed vervoer; woningmarkt voor de middenklasse, etc).

Docenten

De Masterclass De Toekomst van de Stad is onder leiding van dr. Piet Renooy. Verschillende UvA docenten verzorgen een bijdrage in het programma o.a. prof. dr. Pieter Tordoir en dr. Tim Verlaan en diverse gastsprekers, te weten prof. dr. Gert-Jan Hospers, dr. Bas van de Griendt, drs. Josse de Voogd, dr. Jos Gadet, drs. Floor Milikowski en Nik Smit.

Deelnemers ontvangen een certificaat van deelname vanuit de Universiteit van Amsterdam

Masterclass / workshop from Nov 1st to Dec 6th
Leon Benic, Project assistent at Campus Amsterdam, HvA , posted

Meetup: Ontdek het Universiteitskwartier Evenement

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Hoe versterk je de relatie tussen wetenschap, kunst, cultuur en de stad. Het Universiteitskwartier is een belangrijke speler in het kennis- en innovatie ecosysteem van de Amsterdamse regio en inspirerende omgeving voor iedereen die geïnteresseerd is in wetenschap en cultuur. Kom samen met Campus Amsterdam een kijkje nemen en leer meer over de ontwikkelingen in de binnenstad!

Mis dit niet! Kom samen met Campus Amsterdam een kijkje nemen. Tijdens deze middag maakt u kennis met het Universiteitskwartier en komt u in het bijzonder meer te weten over:

  • hoe via communitybuilding en programmering ontmoeting tussen studenten, medewerkers, kennisinstellingen, creatieve ondernemers, culturele instellingen, bedrijfsleven en bewoners wordt gefaciliteerd;
  • de bundeling van kennis en expertise op het gebied van geesteswetenschappelijke thema’s in de nieuwe Amsterdam Humanities Hub;
  • de fysieke ontwikkeling van het Universiteitskwartier en de samenwerking die de gemeente en UvA zijn aangegaan in een gezamenlijk Strategisch Masterplan.

De meet-up zal plaatsvinden vanaf 15:00 t/m 18:30 op het VOX-POP, binnengasthuisstraat 9.
Meld je aan via hier: https://www.campus.amsterdam/s/article?urlname=MeetupUniversiteitskwartier

Leon Benic's picture Meet-up on Sep 27th
Zéger Nieuweboer, Founder / Teacher at Learning is growing.nl, posted

YIMBY Festival

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The YIMBY (Yes in My Backyard) Festival is an event for people and groups involved – or looking to become involved – in grassroots, locally driven community development in a The Festival is an opportunity for people to gather, spread the word about their work, exchange ideas to effect change and strengthen their networks. It’s a chance to celebrate achievements and identify new challenges and opportunities, in an atmosphere focused on listening, learning and engaging. This one-day event invites community groups from across Arnhem to turn the tables on politicians and policy makers, educating them about the issues that face our city’s communities, as experienced by the community. YIMBY provides an opportunity for neighbours to meet neighbours, residents to meet politicians and politicians to meet community groups in the spirit of people coming together for positive change.

Zéger Nieuweboer's picture Meet-up on Sep 24th
Herman van den Bosch, professor in management development , posted

eBooks on how to create better streets, neighborhoods and cities

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Each of the ebooks I've compiled from my blog posts and other publications contains essays on how to make our environment more livable and humane. Anyone can download these ebooks for free. There are also print-friendly versions available and most are available in English and Dutch. Below you will find an overview with links to all of them:

Herman van den Bosch's picture #Mobility
Julie Chenadec, Head of Communications at SDIA - Sustainable Digital Infrastructure Alliance, posted

Let's measure the environmental impact of digital products & applications.

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On September 16 we are inviting the Dutch Tech & IT community to an in-person workshop & knowledge-sharing sessions on measuring the environmental impact of digital products and applications.

We believe the key to reducing the environmental impact of the digital ecosystem is to make it transparent to the user of an application - to raise awareness of the environmental costs of their digital usage.

Join us !

Julie Chenadec's picture Masterclass / workshop on Sep 16th
Henrike Slob, Marketing Communications Lead at Impact Hub Amsterdam, posted

Circular Ecosystem Day

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We would like to welcome you during our Circular ecosystem day where we connect and strengthen relationships between impact entrepreneurs, investors, consumers, corporates, government, and other organisations. Our Circular Ecosystem Day will take place on Wednesday 21 September, and in this edition we will have a special focus on the fashion and textile industry.

PROGRAM 
 
12:00 – 14:30 CIRCO Community event  | Invite only 
This afternoon will be dedicated to inspiration, networking and knowledge sharing around the topic of  circular entrepreneurship. Read more here
 
13:00 – 15:00 Impact Nation| Invite only
Impact Nation organizes an interactive session with Impact Hub’s circular fashion expert Maartje Janse. Under their guidance, we dive deeper into the sustainability challenges in the fashion and textile industry. Read more here. 
 
14:30 – 18:00 Open Program 
The afternoon program will start with a keynote by Marcel den Hollander, followed by the launch of our Circular Textile program in Amsterdam and Fashion Fail Forward.

  • 15:00 Circular Textiles in Amsterdam
    This 2-year program funded by the Municipality of Amsterdam, Stichting DOEN Foundation, and the Goldschmeding Foundation, in which 3 partners (Metabolic, Impact Hub Amsterdam and Bankers without Boundaries) investigate how  through a systematic approach a cohort of innovative companies can be found, scaled up and financed to stimulate the transition to a circular textile value chain.
  • 15:15 Keynote speaker: Marcel den Hollander works as an independent researcher and industrial design consultant to industry in circular product design and business models for the circular economy. As one of the first he studied industrial design at the TU Delft followed by a Ph.D in circular product design and with over 20 years of experience in commercial industrial design for renowned design studios, designing consumer goods from (food)packaging to office furniture, we are proud to have him at the Ecosystem day.
  • 16:00 Fail Forward: As part of our Circular Textile Program we are organising a Fail Forward Fashion edition, in which the founders of circular fashion companies Loop.a Life and Makers Unite & United Repair Center talk about how they failed with a positive outcome. By making ‘learning by doing’ a shared good, we all help each other one step further in the transition to a circular fashion and textile industry.
  • 16:40 – 18:00 Drinks with Impact Hub’s circularity network

Sign up for free by 15 September. Read more about our ecosystem.

Henrike Slob's picture Masterclass / workshop on Sep 21st
Rachid Kherrazi, CTO , posted

Robotica en programmeren workshop voor kinderen

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Deze zomervakantie, op woensdag 17 en 24 augustus, geeft Wail Kherrazi (14) de workshop Bouw en programmeer een Corona 1,5 meter afstand-melder

Het idee voor de corona 1,5 meter afstand-melder ontstond toen twee jaar geleden de 1,5 meter regel werd afgekondigd. Wail ondervond dat veel mensen moeite hadden om op een respectvolle manier 1,5 meter afstand te houden. “Het klinkt zo onaardig om steeds te roepen ‘afstand houden’; daar wilde ik iets aan doen,” vertelt Wail. “Ik vond programmeren altijd al leuk en toen ik nieuwe programmeermaterialen van mijn vader kreeg, ben ik een prototype voor een corona 1,5 meter afstand-melder gaan bouwen.”

Afstand houden
Wail trok al snel de aandacht met zijn uitvinding. Hij werd geïnterviewd door het Jeugdjournaal, kwam met verschillende mensen in contact die hem hielpen een bedrijf op te zetten en werd zelfs genomineerd voor de Nationale Kinderprijs en de CSU Innovatie Award! Met zijn bedrijf, WailSalutem, wil Wail bewerkstelligen dat mensen gezond blijven, goed voor zichzelf zorgen, lief zijn voor elkaar en respectvol met elkaar omgaan. Wail: “Mijn apparaat maakt het gemakkelijker om afstand te houden. Je hoeft niet meer steeds te zeggen dat je graag afstand houdt. Dat doet het apparaat met zijn piepgeluid. En dat is fijn voor mensen die nu en in de toekomst graag afstand willen blijven houden.”

Programmeren met een Arduino
Wail wil kinderen en jongeren graag inspireren. Daarom heeft hij ook WailSalutem Foundation op gericht. Hiermee wil hij kinderen vaardigheden leren op het gebied van internet, technologie, robotica en programmeren.

Wil jij leren programmeren met een Arduino? Wil jij een afstand-melder maken, onder leiding van Wail? Grijp dan je kans en kom naar zijn gast-workshop Bouw en programmeer een corona 1,5 meter afstand-melder, op 17 of 24 augustus!
https://www.debibliotheekamstelland.nl/actueel/nieuws/Wailmaakplaats.html

https://youtu.be/RwND3hVBNkQ

Masterclass / workshop on Aug 17th
Wouter Mulders, Communications Coordinator at Drift, posted

Reflexive Monitoring Course

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Pioneers struggling with uncertainty & controversy when working on sustainability transitions: you are not alone. Whether you’re facilitating transition experiments around nature based solutions, setting up an innovative project for citizen participation in energy or just eager to learn about reflexive monitoring, our Reflexive Monitoring course will provide you with valuable new approaches and insights.

In this 3-day course, dr. PJ Beers (DRIFT) and dr. Barbara van Mierlo (WUR) will guide you through the ins and outs of reflexive monitoring.

Wouter Mulders's picture Masterclass / workshop from Nov 10th to Feb 16th
Arpad Gerecsey, Director/Chief Innovation Officer/Board member at A Lab Amsterdam, posted

Stichting A Lab zoekt een Community Collega

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A Lab is een gemeenschap van 300 creatieven, technologen en sociale ondernemers aan het IJ. Voor en met hen organiseren wij evenementen, verhuren ruimte en brengen we partners uit cultuur, wetenschap, overheid en maatschappij samen.

Wij zijn een Broedplaats zonder winstoogmerk en zoeken een gepassioneerde en ervaren community collega die ons team van vier komt versterken.

Zin in? Klik dan op de link hieronder.

Arpad Gerecsey's picture #Citizens&Living
Herman van den Bosch, professor in management development , posted

New and free e-book: Better cities and digitization

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For 23 weeks I have published weekly episodes of the series Better Cities. The role of digital technology on this site. I have edited and compiled these episodes in an e-book (88 pages). You can download this for free via the link below. The book has 17 chapters that are grouped into six parts:
1. Hardcore: Technology-centered approaches
2. Towards a humancentric approach
3. Misunderstanding the use of data
4. Ethical considerations
5. Embedding digitization in urban policy
6. Applications (government, mobility, energy and healthcare)
7. Wrapping up: Better cities and technology

Herman van den Bosch's picture #DigitalCity
Herman van den Bosch, professor in management development , posted

New e-book: Kennisdossier Zonne-energie

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I updated and put together 75 posts and articles about the energy transition in a new e-book (in Dutch) 'Kennisdossier Zonne-energie' (120 pages). If you interested, download it for free with the link below.

Herman van den Bosch's picture #Energy
Herman van den Bosch, professor in management development , posted

Risks and opportunities of digitization in healthcare

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The 21st episode of the Better cities – the contribution of digital technology-series is about priorities for digital healthcare, often referred to as eHealth.

The subject is broader than what will be discussed here. I won't talk about the degree of automation in surgery, the impressive equipment available to doctors, ranging from the high-tech chair at the dentist to the MRI scanner in hospitals, nor about researching microbes in air, water and sewerage that has exploded due to the covid pandemic. Even the relationship with the urban environment remains somewhat in the background. This simply does not play a prominent role when it comes to digitization in healthcare. The subject, on the other hand, lends itself well to illustrate ethical and social problems associated with digitization. As well as the solutions available in the meantime.

The challenge: saving costs and improving the quality of care

The Netherlands can be fortunate to be one of the countries with the best care in the world. However, there are still plenty of challenges, such as a greater focus on health instead of on disease, placing more responsibility for their own health on citizens, increasing the resilience of hospitals, paying attention to health for the poorer part of the population, whose number of healthy life years is significantly lower and, above all, limiting the increase of cost. Over the past 20 years, healthcare in the Netherlands has become 150% more expensive, not counting the costs of the pandemic. Annual healthcare costs now amount to € 100 billion, about 10% of GDP. Without intervention, this will rise to approximately €170 billion in 2040, mainly due to an aging population. In the meantime, healthcare costs are very unevenly distributed: 80% of healthcare costs go to 10% of the population.

The most important task facing the Netherlands and other rich countries is to use digitization primarily to reduce healthcare costs, while not forgetting the other challenges mentioned. This concerns a series of - often small - forms of digital care. According to McKinsey, savings of €18 billion by 2030 are within reach, if only with forms of digitization with proven effect. Most gains can be made by reducing the administrative burden and shifting costs to less specialized centers, to home treatment and to prevention.

Information provision

There are more than 300,000 health sites and apps on the Internet, which provide comprehensive information about diseases, options for diagnosis and self-treatment. More and more medical data can also be viewed online. Often the information on apps is incomplete resulting in misdiagnosis. Doctors in the Netherlands especially recommend the website Thuisarts.nl, which they developed themselves.

Many apps use gamification, such as exercises to improve memory. A good example of digital social innovation is Mirrorable, a program to treat children with motor disorders because of brain injury. This program also enables contact between parents whose inputs continuously help to improve exercises.

Process automation

Process automation in healthcare resembles in many respects automation elsewhere, such as personnel, logistics and financial management. More specific is the integrated electronic patient file. The Framework Act on Electronic Data Exchange in Healthcare, adopted in 2021, obliges healthcare providers to exchange data electronically and prescribes standards. However, data exchange will be minimal and will only take place at a decentralized level to address privacy concerns. The complexity of the organization of health care and the constant discussions about the content of such a system were also immense obstacles. That's a pity because a central system lowers costs and increases quality. Meanwhile, new technological developments guarantee privacy with great certainty. For example, the use of federated (decentralized) forms of data storage combined with blockchain. TNO conducts groundbreaking research in this area. The institution applies the principles of federated learning along with the application of multi-party computation technology. These innovative technologies enable learning from sensitive data from multiple sources without sharing this data.

Video calling

The recent eHealth monitor of the RIVM shows that by 2021 almost half of all doctors and nurses had had contact with patients with video calling, while this hardly happened in 2019. Incidentally, this concerns a relatively small group of patients. In the US there was an even larger increase, which has now been converted into a sharp decline. It seems that in the US primary health care is reinventing itself. Walgreens, the largest US drugstore chain, will begin offering primary care in 1000 of its stores. Apparently, in many cases, physical contact with a doctor is irreplaceable, even if (or perhaps because) the doctor is relatively anonymous.

Video calling is not only important for care provider, but also for informal caregivers, family and friends and help to combat loneliness. Virtual reality (metaverse!) will further expand the possibilities for this. TNO is also active here: The TNO media lab is developing a scalable communication platform in which the person involved (patient or client), using only an upright iPad, has the impression that the doctor, district nurse or visitor is sitting at the table or on the couch right in front.

Self-diagnosis

The effectiveness of a remote consultation is of course served if the patient has already made a few observations him- or herself. 8% of patients with chronic conditions already do this. There is a growing range of self-tests available for, for example, fertility, urinary tract infections, kidney disorders and of course Covid-19. There are also home devices such as smart thermometers, mats that detect diabetic foot complications, and blood pressure meters; basically, everything that doctors often routinely do during a visit. The GGD AppStore provides an overview of relevant and reliable apps in the field of health.

Wearables, for example built into an i-watch, can collect part of the desired data, store it for a longer period and, if necessary, exchange it with the care provider.

More advanced are the mobile diagnosis boxes for emergency care by nurses on location, such as ambulances. With a fast Internet connection (5G), specialist care providers can watch if necessary.

A small but growing group of patients, doctors, and researchers with substantial financial support from Egon Musk sees the future mainly in chip implants. This would allow not only more complete diagnoses to be made, but also treatments to be carried out. Neuralink has developed a brain implant that improves communication with speech and hearing-impaired people. The Synchron brain implant helps people with brain disorders perform simple movements. For the time being, the resistance to brain implants is high.

Remote monitoring

Meanwhile, all these low-threshold amenities can lead us to become fixated on disease rather than on health. But what if we never had to worry about our health again? Instead, the local health center watches over our health thanks to wearables: Our data is continuously monitored and analyzed using artificial intelligence. They are compared with millions of diagnostic data from other patients. By comparing patterns, diseases can be predicted in good time, followed by automated suggestions for self-treatment or advice to consult a doctor. Until then, we have probably experienced nothing but vague complaints ourselves. Wouldn't that be an attractive prospect?

Helsinki is experimenting with a Health Benefit Analysis tool that anonymously examines patients' medical records to evaluate the care they have received so far. The central question here is can the municipality proactively approach people based on the health risk that has come to light because of this type of analysis?

Medics participating in a large-scale study by the University of Chicago and the company Verify were amazed at the accuracy with which algorithms were able to diagnose patients and predict diseases ranging from cardiovascular disease to cancer. In a recent article, oncologist Samuel Volchenboom described that it is painful to note that the calculations came from Verify, a subsidiary of Alphabet, which not only used medical data (with patients’ consent), but also all other data that sister company Google already had stored about them. He adds that it is unacceptable that owning and using such valuable data becomes the province of only a few companies.

Perhaps even more problematic is that these predictions are based in part on patterns in the data that the researchers can't fully explain. It is therefore argued that the use of these types of algorithms should be banned. But how would a patient feel if such an algorithmic recommendation is the last straw? It is better to invest in more transparent artificial intelligence.

Implementing digital technology

Both many patients and healthcare professionals still have doubts about the added value of digital technology. The media reports new cases of data breaches and theft every day. Most people are not very confident that blockchain technology, among other things, can prevent this. Most medical specialists doubt whether ICT will reduce their workload. It is often thought of as some additional thing. Numerous small-scale pilot projects are taking place, which consume a lot of energy, but which are rarely scaled up. The supply of digital healthcare technologies exceeds their use.

Digital medicine will have to connect more than at present with the needs of health professionals and patients. In addition to concerns about privacy, the latter are especially afraid of further reductions in personal attention. The idea of a care robot is terrifying them. As should be the case with all forms of digitization, there is a need for a broadly supported vision and setting priorities based on that.

Against this background, a plea for even more medical technology in our part of the world, including e-health, is somewhat embarrassing. Growth in healthy years due to investment in health care in developing countries will far exceed the impact of the same investment in wealthy countries.

Nevertheless, it is desirable to continue deliberately on the chosen path, whereby expensive experiments for the benefit of a small group of patients have less priority in my opinion than investments in a healthy lifestyle, prevention, and self-reliance. Healthcare cannot and should not be taken over by robots; digitization and automation are mainly there to support and improve the work of the care provider and make it more satisficing and efficient.

One of the chapters in my e-book Future cities, always humane, smart if helpful, also deals with health care and offers examples of digital tools. In addition, it pays much more contextual information about the global health situation, particularly in cities. You can download by following the link below. The Dutch edition is here.

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Will MaaS reduce the use of cars?

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In the 18th episode of the Better Cities - The contribution of technology-series, I answer the question how digital technology in the form of MaaS (Mobility as a Service) will help reduce car use, which is the most important intervention of improving the livability of cities, in addition to providing citizens with a decent income.

Any human activity that causes 1.35 million deaths worldwide, more than 20 million injuries, total damage of $1,600 billion, consumes 50% of urban space and contributes substantially to global warming would be banned immediately. This does not apply to traffic, because it is closely linked to our way of life and to the interests of motordom. For example, in his books Fighting traffic and Autonorame: The illusory promise of high-tech driving, Peter Horton refers to the coteri of the automotive industry, the oil companies and befriended politicians who have been stimulating car use for a century. Without interventions, global car ownership and use will grow exponentially over the next 30 years.

Reduction of car use

In parallel with the growth of car use, trillions have been invested worldwide in ever new and wider roads and in the management of traffic flows with technological means.

It has repeatedly been confirmed that the construction of more roads and traffic-regulating technology have a temporary effect and then further increase car use. Economists call this induced demand. The only effective counter-measures are impeding car use and to discourage the perceived need to use the car, preferably in a non-discriminatory way.

Bringing housing, shopping, and employment closer together (15-minute city) reduces the need to travel by car, but this is a long-term perspective. The most effective policy in the short term is to reduce parking options at home, at work and near shopping facilities and always prioritizing alternative modes of transport (walking, micro-mobility, and public transport). Copenhagen and Amsterdam have been investing in bicycle infrastructure for years and are giving cyclists a green track in many places at the expense of car traffic.

For several years now, Paris has also been introducing measures to discourage car traffic by 1,400 kilometers of cycle paths, ban on petrol and diesel cars in 2030, redesign of intersections with priority for pedestrians, 200 kilometers of extension of the metro system and closure of roads and streets. Meanwhile, car use has fallen from 61% in 2001 to 35% now. Milan has similar plans and in Berlin a group is preparing a referendum in 2023 with the aim of making an area car-free larger than Manhattan. Even in Manhattan and Brooklyn, there is a strong movement to reduce car use through a substantial shift of road capacity from cars to bicycles, pedestrians, and buses.

Public transport

Because of the pandemic, the use of public transport has decreased significantly worldwide as many users worked from home, could not go to school, took the bicycle or a car. Nevertheless, cities continue to promote public transport as a major strategy to reduce car use. In many places in the world, including in Europe, urban development has resulted in a high degree of dispersion of and between places to live, shop, and work. The ease of bridging the 'last mile' will contribute significantly to the increase in the use of public transport. While bicycles play an important role in this in the Netherlands, the ideas elsewhere are based on all forms of 'dockless micromobility’.

Autonomous transport

From a technological point of view, autonomous passenger transport involves type four or five at a taxonomy of automated cars. This includes the Waymo brand developed by Google. In some places in the US, these cars are allowed to drive with a supervisor ('safety driver') on board. Type 5 (fully autonomous driving under all circumstances) does not yet exist at all, and it is highly questionable whether this will ever happen. Besides, it is questionable too whether the automotive industry aspires building such a car at a substantial scale. Given their availability, it is expected that many people will forgo purchasing them and instead use them as a shared car or as a (shared or not) taxi. This will significantly reduce car ownership. To sell as many cars as possible, it is expected that the automotive industry will aim for level three automation, which means that the car can take over the actions of the driver, who must stay vigilant.

The impact on cities of autonomous shared cars and (shared) taxis is highly uncertain. Based on traffic data in the Boston area and surveys of residents, a study by the Boston Consultancy Group shows that approximately 30% of all transport movements (excluding walking) will take place in an autonomous car. But it also appears that users of public transport are a significant part of this group. Most people interviewed were scared using an unmanned shared taxi. Without sharing, there will be more cars on the road and more traffic jams in large parts of the city than now. A scenario study in the city of Porto (Portugal) that assumes that autonomous cars are mainly used as shared taxis and public transport is not cannibalized shows a significant decrease in car traffic.

Considering refraining from car use

Designing an efficient transport system is not that difficult; its acceptance by people is. Many see the car as an extension of the home, in which - even more than at home - they can listen to their favorite music, smoke, make phone calls or meet other persons unnoticed. Considering this, the step to alternative transport such as walking, cycling, or using public transport is a big one.

Most people will only decide to do so if external circumstances give sufficient reason. Hybrid working can lead to people wondering whether keeping an expensive (second) car is still responsible and cycling – in good weather – is also an option. Or they notice that because of restrictions driving a car loses part of its attractiveness and that public transport is not that bad after all. Some employers (Arcadis, for example) also encourage other forms of mobility than the (electric) lease car. <i>This lays the foundation for a 'mind set' in which people begin to break down their mobility needs into different components, each of which is best served by another mode of transport.</i> As soon as they realize that the car is an optimal solution only for part of the journeys, they realize that the price is shockingly high and a shared car is cheaper. For other journeys, a (shared) bicycle or public transport may be considered. Against this background, the concept of Mobility as a Service (MaaS) must be placed.

Mobility as a Service: MaaS

MaaS is an app that offers comprehensive door-to-door proposals for upcoming journeys, ranging from the nearest shared bicycle or scooter for the first mile or alternatively a (shared) taxi, the best available connection to public transport, the best transfer option, to the best option for the last mile. For daily users of the same route, the app provides information about alternatives in the event of disruptions. In the event of a delay in the journey, for example on the way to the airport, an alternative will be arranged if necessary. No worries about departure times, mode of transport, tickets, reservations, and payment. At least, ideally.

These kinds of apps are being developed in many places in the world and by various companies and organizations. First, Big Tech is active, especially Google. Intel also seems to have all the components for a complete MaaS solution, after taking over Moovit, Mobileye and Cubic. In Europe, it is mainly local and regional authorities, transport companies (Transdec, RATP, NS) and the automotive industry (Daimler-Benz and in the Netherlands PON).

The Netherlands follows its own course. The national MaaS program is based on public-private partnership. Seven pilots are ready to take-off. Each of these pilots places a different emphasis: Sustainability, accessibility of rural areas, congestion reduction and public transport promotion, integration of target group transport, public transport for the elderly and cross-border transport.

The pandemic has delayed its start significantly. The Gaiyo pilot in Utrecht (Leidsche Rijn) is the only one that is active for some time, and the results are encouraging. Apart from the national MaS pilots, the RiVier initiative was launched in January 2019; a joint venture of NS, RET and HTM in collaboration with Siemens.

Worth mentioning is an initiative from the European Union (European Institute for Innovation and technology - Urban Mobility), Eindhoven University of Technology, Achmea and Capgemini. 21 partners have now joined, including the municipality of Amsterdam. The aim is a pan-European open mobility service platform, called Urban Mobility Operating System (UMOS). The project aims to provide MaaS for the whole of Europe in the long term. UMOS expects local providers to join this initiative. Unlike most other initiatives, this is a non-profit platform. For the other providers, profitability will mainly be a long-term perspective.

The development of the MaaS app is complex from a technological and organizational point of view. It is therefore not surprising that five years after the first landing there are only partial solutions. <b>The basis for a successful app is the presence of a varied and high-quality range of transport facilities, a centralized information and sales system and standardization of various data and interfaces of all transport companies involved.</b> So far, they have not always been willing to share data. A company like London Transport wants to maintain direct contact with customers, and Uber and Lyft don't want to hand over the algorithms they use to calculate their variable fare. This type of data is indispensable for realizing a real-time offer of several door-to-door transport alternatives for every conceivable route, including pricing, and purchasing tickets. It is hoped that licensing authorities will mandate the provision of all data required for a fully functioning MaaS platform.

One of the most balanced MaaS applications is MaaX developed by Capgemini, the Paris Transport Authority and the RATP. This is comparable to the NS and OV9292 app, supplemented by options for carpooling, taxi transport, shared cars, shared bicycles, scooters, electric scooters, and parking.

Does MaaS is viable?

I believe that MaaS as such will encourage very few motorists to refrain from owning a car. This will mainly have to be done through measures that impede car use or reduce the need for it. Nevertheless, MaaS is useful for those who have just decided to look for alternatives. The app also has added-value for users of public transport, for instance if information in the event of disruptions is made available timely.

It is therefore clear to me that this app should be made available as a form of service, funded by the transport providers and the government and can make significant savings in infrastructure costs if car use decreases.

The above deepens two essays included in my e-book Cities of the Future: Always humane, smart if helpful. The first essay Livability and traffic – The walkable city connects insights about livability with different forms of passenger transport and policy. The second essay Towards zero road casualties: The traffic-safe city discusses policies to make traffic safer and the effect of 'self-driving' cars on road safety. The e-book can be downloaded here by following the link below.

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How can digital tools help residents to regain ownership of the city?

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The 17th edition of the Better cities - the role of digital technology series deals with strengthening local democracy through digitization.

In 1339, Ambrogio Lorenzetti completed his famous series of six paintings in the Town Hall of the Italian city of Siena, entitled The Allegory of Good and Bad Government. The above excerpt refers to the characteristics of good government: putting the interests of citizens first, renouncing self-interest, and integrity. But also developing a vision together with all those involved, transparency, justice and efficiently carrying out its many tasks.

In this article, I will discuss citizens’ involvement in government. The complaint is widely heard that democracy is reduced to voting once every few years and even then, it is not clear in advance what the policy of a new (city) government will be, due to the need to form coalitions. Digitization can substantially strengthen the citizen's input.

Being well-informed: the foundation of democracy

Digital channels are an excellent way to inform citizens, but digital disinformation and deepfakes are also on the rise. In this regard, YouTube has become notorious. Political microtargeting via Facebook has an uncontrollable impact and ruins the political debate. On the other hand, the 'Stemwijzer' app is a well-respected tool of informing citizens. Meanwhile, this tool has been adopted by a number of countries.

There are many other valuable digital sources of information, which increase the transparency of politics, for example by disclosing petty bribery, 'creative' accounting and preferential treatment. Prozorro (Ukraine) is a website that takes tenders away from the private sphere, My Society                                                                                                     (UK) is an extensive collection of open source tools to hold those in power to account, Zašto (Serbia) is a website that compares statements of politicians with their actions and Funky Citizens (Romania) exposes irresponsible government spending, miscarriages of justice and forms of indecent political conduct.

Voting

Every time I am amazed at the fumbling with huge ballot-papers that then must be counted by hand.  Estonia is leading the way here; people vote digitally from home without security risks. If this is not possible in other countries, then I have my doubts about the security of other digital applications
Estonia is the best example of far-reaching digitization of public and private services. Not only the usual municipal services, but also applying for building permits, registering for schools, health affairs, banking, taxes, police, and voting. All these things happen via one digital platform - X-road – that meets the highest security requirements. Data is stored in a decentral way via end-to-end encryption using blockchain technology. Citizens manage their own data.

More than voting

There is a widespread desire among citizens for greater involvement in political decision-making. This includes referenda and popular assemblies, which still take place in Swiss municipalities. But there is little room here for the exchange of views, let alone discussion. Moreover, several authors try to improve direct democracy by bypassing the role of political parties. In his book Against elections (2013), the Flemish political scientist David van Reybrouck proposes appointing representatives based on weighted lottery. A lottery alone does not yet provide a representative group, because never more than 10% of the chosen people respond to the invitation. What remains is a predominantly indigenous group, over 50 years of age with higher education, interested in politics.
The strength of citizens' forums is that they enable deliberation between independent citizens rather than representatives of political parties, who are bound in every way by coalition agreements.

Van Reybrouck’s ideas have been adopted in different ways and in different places, but always as a complement to representative democracy. Citizens' forums have achieved good results in Ireland. There are also several examples in the Netherlands. The biggest bottleneck has been the acceptance of the results by established political bodies. In April 2021, a committee led by Alex Brenninkmeijer advised positive about the value of citizens' forums in climate policy in an advisory report to the House of Representatives.

Digital instruments

Another interesting option is liquid democracy. Here, like direct democracy, citizens can vote on all issues. However, they can also transfer their vote to someone else, who they believe is more involved. This person can also transfer the received mandates. With secure IT, this is easy to organize. Examples of useful apps include Adhocracy (Germany), a platform for participation, collaboration and idea generation, Licracy, a virtual people's parliament, Sovrin, an open source decentralized protocol for any kind of organization. Insights Management Tool is an application for converting opinions of a large amounts of citizens into 'insights' that can benefit politicians. I will add a few more applications, which are mainly intended for cities: EngageCitizens (many South European cities including Braga, Portugal), an application that enables citizens to submit ideas and discuss them in virtual discussion groups, Active Citizens (Moscow), an application where residents can participate in referendums, CitizenLab, a medium for citizens to discuss ideas about local issues. Finally, I refer to the comprehensive applications Decide Madrid and Decidem (Barcelona), which I have discussed elsewhere.
All these apps increase the involvement of part of the citizens in government. These are usually highly educated. Meetings are held in Madrid and Barcelona to let underprivileged residents also make their voices heard.

Political decentralization

Due to the many and complicated tasks that city authorities must deal with and the often equally complicated decision making in the city council, it is not easy create room for decentralized citizen participation. Several cities try to improve citizen participation in political decentralization. The establishment of city districts with their own administrative bodies often leads to power struggles between central and decentralized politicians, without residents gaining more influence.
According to Jan Schrijver, the centralized administrative culture of Amsterdam the city’s ideals of citizen participation often clashes even though the impressive amount of policy instruments to promote participation: Initiating a referendum has been made more accessible, social initiatives can be subsidized, and confirmed in neighborhood rights, including the 'right to challenge' and neighborhoods have a budget of their own.

Very recently, a 'mini-citizen deliberation' was held under the leadership of Alex Brenninkmeijer on the concrete question of how Amsterdam can accelerate the energy transition. This meeting was very productive, and the participants were satisfied with the progress. It will become clear soon whether the city council will adopt the proposals.

A city of commons

Democratization is mostly conceived of as a decision-making process, the result of which the municipal organization carries out. The ultimate step of democratization, after decentralization, is autonomy: Residents not only decide on, for example, playgrounds in their neighborhood, they also ensure that these are provided. Increasingly, the latter is formally established in the right to challenge. For example, a group of residents demonstrates that they can perform a previously municipal task better and often cheaper themselves. This is a significant step on the participation ladderfrom participating in decision-making autonomy.

In Italy this process has boomed, and the city of Bologna has become a stronghold of urban commons. Citizens become designers, managers, and users of some municipal tasks. Creating green areas, converting an empty house into affordable units for students, the elderly, or migrants, operating a minibus service, cleaning, and maintaining the city walls, refurbishing parts of the public space and much more.
From 2011, commons have been given a formal status. The most important instruments in this regard are cooperation-pacts. In each pact, city authorities and the parties involved (informal groups, NGOs, schools, entrepreneurs) lay down agreements about their activities, responsibilities, and power. Hundreds of pacts have been signed since the regulation was adopted. The city provides what the citizens need - money, material, housing, advice - and the citizens make their time, skills, and organizational capacity available. In some cases, commons also have a commercial purpose, for example the revitalization of a shopping street by the entrepreneurs established there. In that case, they often unite in a cooperative.
Only a limited number of people feel attracted to talk along the lines of politics, but many more people want to do something. This is at the roots of the success of the commons-movement.  This explains the success of the commons-movement in Italy and elsewhere.

Democracy after the commons

The commons-movement might influence urban governance in the longer term. The Italian political scientist Christian Iaione predicts the emergence of a city of commons. Here, all most urban tasks are performed by commons and cooperatives. The city is a network of both, decision-making is decentralized and deconcentrated.

A similar idea The city as a platform has emerged in the US coming from a completely different direction. Instead of simply voting every few years and leaving city administration to elected officials and expert bureaucrats, the networked city sees citizens as co designers, co-producers, and co-learners, according to Stefaan Verhulst, co-founder of GovLab. In the city as a platform residents look individually and collectively for new and better ways to meet their needs and enliven public life. These may be neighborhood-based initiatives, for example the redevelopment of a neighborhood or city-wide initiatives, for example cooperative of taxi drivers, competing with Uber.

Without saying it in so many words, everyone involved sees both the city of commons and the city as a platform as an opportunity to make citizens the engine of urban development again instead of multinational companies. But in view of the (financial) power of these companies, it could also turn out that they appropriate the city. We have already experienced this once when a sympathetic and democratic sharing platform such as Airbnb grew into a multinational enterprise with a far-reaching impact on urban life. For the time being, therefore, city administrators can best focus on enabling and supporting citizens' joint action to make cities more beautiful, liveable, and sustainable.

The above builds on two essays included in my e-book Cities of the Future: Always humane, smart if helpful. The first essay Strengthening Urban Democracy – The Well-Governed City elaborates on the concepts of direct democracy, decentralization and autonomy and describes digital applications for both improving services and urban democracy. The second essay Citizens' Initiatives – City of the Commons extensively examines activities in various places in the world to increase the involvement of residents in their place of residence, and in that context discusses in detail the idea behind 'commons'. The e-book can be downloaded by following the link below.

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Abuse of artificial intelligence by the police in the US. More than bias

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The 16th episode of the series Building sustainable cities - The contribution of digital technology reveals what can happen if the power of artificial intelligence is not used in a responsible manner.

The fight against crime in the United States, has been the scene of artificial intelligence’s abuse for years. As will become apparent, this is not only the result of bias. In episode 11, I discussed why artificial intelligence is a fundamentally new way of using computers. Until then, computers were programmed to perform operations such as structuring data and making decisions. In the case of artificial intelligence, they are trained to do so. However, it is still people who design the instructions (algorithms) and are responsible for the outcomes, although the way in which the computer performs its calculations is increasingly becoming a 'black box'.

Applications of artificial intelligence in the police

Experienced detectives are traditionally trained to compare the 'modus operandi' of crimes to track down perpetrators. Due to the labor-intensive nature of the manual implementation, the question soon arose as to whether computers could be of assistance. A first attempt to do so in 2012 in collaboration with the Massachusetts Institute of Technology resulted in grouping past crimes into clusters that were likely to have been committed by the same perpetrator(s). When creating the algorithm, the intuition of experienced police officers was the starting point. Sometimes it was possible to predict where and when a burglar might strike, leading to additional surveillance and an arrest.

These first attempts were soon refined and taken up by commercial companies. The two most used techniques that resulted are predictive policing (PredPol) and facial recognition.

In the case of predictive policing, patrols are given directions in which neighborhood or even street they should patrol at a given moment because it has been calculated that the risk of crimes (vandalism, burglary, violence) is then greatest. Anyone who behaves 'suspiciously' risks to be arrested. Facial recognition plays also an important role in this.

Both predictive policing and facial recognition are based on a "learning set" of tens of thousands of "suspicious" individuals. At one point, New York police had a database of 48,000 individuals. 66% of those were black, 31.7% were Latino and only 1% were white. This composition has everything to do with the working method of the police. Although drug use in cities in the US is common in all neighborhoods, policing based on PredPol and similar systems is focused on a few neighborhoods (of color). Then, it is not surprising that most drug-related crimes are retrieved there and, as a result, the composition of the database became even more skewed.

Overcoming bias

In these cases, 'bias' is the cause of the unethical effect of the application of artificial intelligence. Algorithms always reflect the assumptions, views, and values of their creators. They do not predict the future, but make sure that the past is reproduced. This also applies to applications outside the police force. The St. George Hospital Medical School in London has employed disproportionately many white males for at least a decade because the leather set reflected the incumbent staff. The criticized Dutch System Risk Indication System also uses historical data about fines, debts, benefits, education, and integration to search more effectively for people who abuse benefits or allowances. This is not objectionable but should never lead to 'automatic' incrimination without further investigation and the exclusion of less obvious persons.

The simple fact that the police have a disproportionate presence in alleged hotspots and are very keen on any form of suspicious behavior means that the number of confrontations with violent results has increased rapidly. In 2017 alone, police crackdowns in the US resulted in an unprecedented 1,100 casualties, of which only a limited number of whites. In addition, the police have been engaged in racial profiling for decades. Between 2004-2012, the New York Police Department checked more than 4.4 million residents. Most of these checks resulted in no further action. In about 83% of the cases, the person was black or Latino, although the two groups together make up just over half of the population. For many citizens of colour in the US, the police do not represent 'the good', but have become part of a hostile state power.

In New York, in 2017, a municipal provision to regulate the use of artificial intelligence was proposed, the Public Oversight of Surveillance Technology Act (POST). The Legal Defense and Educational Fund, a prominent US civil rights organization, urged the New York City Council to ban the use of data made available because of discriminatory or biased enforcement policies. This wish was granted in June 2019, and this resulted in the number of persons included in the database being reduced from 42,000 to 18,000. It concerned all persons who had been included in the system without concrete suspicion.

San Francisco, Portland, and a range of other cities have gone a few steps further and banned the use of facial recognition technology by police and other public authorities. Experts recognize that the artificial intelligence underlying facial recognition systems is still imprecise, especially when it comes to identifying the non-white population.

The societal roots of crime

Knowledge of how to reduce bias in algorithms has grown, but instead of solving the problem, awareness has grown into a much deeper problem. It is about the causes of crime itself and the realization that the police can never remove them.

Crime and recidivism are associated with inequality, poverty, poor housing, unemployment, use of alcohol and drugs, and untreated mental illness. These are also dominant characteristics of neighborhoods with a lot of crime. As a result, residents of these neighborhoods are unable to lead a decent life. These conditions are stressors that influence the quality of the parent-child relationship too: attachment problems, insufficient parental supervision, including tolerance of alcohol and drugs, lack of discipline or an excess of authoritarian behavior. All in all, these conditions increase the likelihood that young people will be involved in crime, and they diminish the prospect of a successful career in school and elsewhere.

The ultimate measures to reduce crime in the longer term and to improve security are: sufficient income, adequate housing, affordable childcare, especially for 'broken families' and unwed mothers and ample opportunities for girls' education. But also, care for young people who have encountered crime for the first time, to prevent them from making the mistake again.

Beyond bias

This will not solve the problems in the short term. A large proportion of those arrested by the police in the US are addicted to drugs or alcohol, are severely mentally disturbed, have serious problems in their home environment - if any - and have given up hope for a better future. Based on this understanding, the police in Johnson County, Kansas, have been calling for help from mental health professionals for years, rather than handcuffing those arrested right away. This approach has proved successful and caught the attention of the White House during the Obama administration. Lynn Overmann, who works as a senior advisor in the president’s technology office, has therefore started the Data-Driven Justice Initiative. The immediate reason was that the prisons appeared to be crowded by seriously disturbed psychiatric patients. Coincidentally, Johnson County had an integrated data system that stores both crime and health data. In other cities, these are kept in incomparable data silos. Together with the University of Chicago Data Science for Social Good Program, artificial intelligence was used to analyze a database of 127,000 people. The aim was to find out, based on historical data, which of those involved was most likely to be arrested within a month. This is not with the intention of hastening an arrest with predictive techniques, but instead to offer them targeted medical assistance. This program was picked up in several cities and in Miami it resulted in a 40% reduction in arrests and the closing of an entire prison.

What does this example teach? The rise of artificial intelligence caused Wire editor Chris Anderson to call it the end of the theory. He couldn't be more wrong! Theory has never disappeared; at most it has disappeared from the consciousness of those who work with artificial intelligence. In his book The end of policing, Alex Vitale concludes: Unless cities alter the police's core functions and values, use by police of even the most fair and accurate algorithms is likely to enhance discriminatory and unjust outcomes (p. 28). Ben Green adds: The assumption is: we predicted crime here and you send in police. But what if you used data and sent in resources? (The smart enough city, p. 78).

The point is to replace the dominant paradigm of identifying, prosecuting and incarcerating criminals with the paradigm of finding potential offenders in a timely manner and giving them the help, they need. It turns out that it's even cheaper. The need for the use of artificial intelligence is not diminishing, but the training of the computers, including the composition of the training sets, must change significantly. It is therefore recommended that diverse and independent teams design such a training program based on a scientifically based view of the underlying problem and not leaving it to the police itself.

This article is a condensed version of an earlier article The Safe City (September 2019), which you can read by following the link below, supplemented with data from Chapter 4 Machine learning's social and political foundationsfrom Ben Green's book The smart enough city (2020).

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