Urban automation is expanding through developments in artificial intelligence, robotics, drones, sensors, autonomous vehicles and investment in urban control centres. This offers opportunities to support urban living, use infrastructures more efficiently and respond to turbulence. It also raises issues about trust, control and automated segregation.
The theme seeks to understand how innovations in autonomous systems and robotics shape urban life and infrastructures.
– Can urban automation be understood as a distinctive socio-technical field and what are its potential urban implications?
– How are experiments in automation and robotics shaping governance processes across different domains of urban life?
– What forms of automated citizenship are developing and how do they shape human capabilities and experiences?
– Is expansion in non-human decision-making creating more adaptable or centralised logics of urban control?
Three ‘living labs’ which show how autonomous robots are changing cities
Automating the City & Urbanising Automation: Four priorities to shape the expansion of robotics and autonomous systems in our everyday lives.
Knowing: The KNOWledge politics of experimentING with smart urbanism: Comparative work on urban automation over 8 European cities over three years within Sheffield and with European partners (3 yrs from Sept 2016, ORA-ESRC funded).
Governance of Urban Sustainability Transitions (GUST): Advancing the role of the living lab (3 yrs from 2014, JPI Urban Europe).
Beyond Smart Cities: A Comparative Analysis of Experimentation in Urban Automation and Robotics China/UK: A 2 year Royal Society grant in collaboration with the School of Architecture at the Southeast University
4 September 2017 – Rise of the Automated City – Public Lecture
5-6 September 2017 – Urban Automation/Automated Cities: Developing a Critical Research Agenda, International workshop
International network of the German Academy of Spatial Research and Planning (ARL): 3 year working group (from 2016) on “Smart grids – Smart cities”.
Future Cities Catapult: Expert Advisory Group
‘Daily life, digital technologies and energy demand’ Early Career Researcher network – International 2-day workshop & webinar series led to a co-edited working paper collection, and panel session at the Beyond Balance Conference (London), as part of EPSRC network funding awarded by the Balance Network.