The ‘Smart City Living Lab’ is an emerging approach in European cities. It brings together citizens, policymakers, businesses and researchers to test smart, ICT-based solutions to urban problems in real-life contexts.
However, for urban mobility problems, solutions that ‘work’ in the particular reality of a living lab may not be adopted at a large scale. Urban infrastructure is interwoven with the daily lives of citizens and therefore difficult to change, and large groups may not even have access to ICT-based solutions. The SmarterLabs project develops a novel approach that anticipates such problems in upscaling, and tests the approach through smart mobility living lab experiments in four cities: Bellinzona, Brussels, Graz and Maastricht.
The SmarterLabs project aims to develop a Smart City Living Lab approach to effectively deal with two major risks to successful, widespread implementation of smart transport technologies:
- Unforeseen barriers to large-scale change in socio-technical systems, and
- Exclusion of social groups not matching the required ‘smart citizen’ profile.
The methodology includes the following:
- Retrospective analysis of urban mobility projects in Bellinzona, Brussels, Graz and Maastricht
- Action research in Living Lab experiments in these four cities
- Cross evaluation to develop guidelines