The Data & Society Research Institute is a new, New York City-based think/do tank launching in 2014 dedicated to addressing social, technical, ethical, legal, and policy issues that are emerging because of data-centric technological development. Data & Society will provide a space for researchers, entrepreneurs, activists, policy creators, journalists, geeks, and public intellectuals to gather, debate, and engage one another on the key issues introduced by the increasing availability of data in society.
Data & Society will bring together divergent constituencies, host events, do directed research, create policy frameworks, and build demonstration projects to grapple with the challenges and opportunities presented by an ever-increasing amount of available information. The Institute will imagine, take on, and develop projects that will help society’s understanding of and ability to adapt to a data-soaked world. The output of this Institute will be directed at broad audiences.
LABORATORIO PARA LA CIUDAD
The Laboratorio para la Ciudad (Laboratory for the City) is Mexico City’s new experimental office for civic innovation and urban creativity, the first city government department of its kind in Latin America. The Lab is a space for rethinking, reimagining, and reinventing the way citizens and government can work together towards a more open, more livable and more imaginative city.
How do we reconnect cities and citizens through government itself?
This is the question that drives our work at the Lab. We approach it not only as a matter of delivering better services or offering new channels for engagement, but truly reimagining the role of government and how it can contribute to building better cities.
What if government went beyond administration, promoting innovation, and even possibly channeling imagination? What if government was not just a regulator, but a true catalyzer for change?
The Lab is conformed by a young, multidisciplinary team, mostly without prior government experience. We’re an unusual bunch: architects, technologists, editors, art historians, political scientists, journalists, urban planners, filmmakers, sociologists, designers, urban psychologists… The one thing we all share is our impatient optimism, a passion for the city, and the belief that positive change can be born within government.
Another key factor is collaboration. The Lab is constantly seeking new proposals and provocations around the problems and opportunities of the city through collaborative efforts, both within government and through civil society.
To pursue these opportunities, the Urban Center for Computation and Data (UrbanCCD) was created in 2012 within the Computation Institute, a joint initiative of the University of Chicago and Argonne National Laboratory. UrbanCCD combines the complementary strengths of Argonne in physical sciences and engineering with UChicago’s expertise in social sciences, economics, and policy. The center also unites researchers multiple academic institutions, city agencies, architectural firms, and private enterprise.
UrbanCCD’s mission is to catalyze and pursue an interdisciplinary research agenda in urban sciences aimed at increasing our understanding of cities and our ability to anticipate the effects of rapid global urbanization on natural, built, and socioeconomic systems.
UrbanCCD is pursuing this mission by:
• applying expertise and resources in computational modeling to transform the way cities are designed and expanded through the integration of urban design tools with computational simulation,
• creating data analytics techniques and capabilities that allow for proactive city operation and planning, relying upon evidence-based analytics to move beyond policy based primarily on heuristics and intuition, and
• providing tools and methods to integrate data from a variety of sources, including databases, scientific simulations, and mobile and fixed sensors, and exploring new paradigms harnessing embedded technologies to enrich the urban experience.
Week picks series features different initiatives and projects I found or want to highlight on this blog. It will help me track new findings from community groups, startups or local governments working and delivering solutions relevant to the issues covered on this blog. I often bookmark them or save them on Tumblr.