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Dialogplattform Smart People & Urban Commoning


Symposium Beware of Smart People!

Re-defining the Smart City Paradigm towards Inclusive Urbanism

June 19 - 20, 2015, Berlin

Czech Center / Tschechisches Kulturzentrum & TU Berlin, Main building, Lichthof

The current debate about Smart Cities is strongly influenced by technological and application-oriented “hard” perspectives that predominantly materialize through the insertion of “smart” infrastructures into existing urban systems. Citizens (as individuals) and urban societies (as bodies) remain passive beneficiaries, end users or consumers.

This “smartification” of urban management is contrasted by increasing demands made by civil society and urban social movements towards greater inclusion in decision-making: New urban actors acquire new agency through local knowledge, expertise, creativity, social networking skills and collaborative capabilities, or social entrepreneurship.

The symposium “Beware of Smart People” addresses the conflictual reality in which Smart City approaches are currently unfolding. International scholars and practitioners will

(1)   Reflect on the “Smart City” as a contested paradigm;

(2)   Shift the discourse towards the notion of the urban as co-produced by many voices;

(3)   Attempt to redefine “Smart City” by putting ordinary citizens as “Smart People” at the core of the debate.


Beware of Smart People!

Friday, June 19, 2015, 7pm

Czech Center / Tschechisches Kulturzentrum, Wilhelmstraße 44, 10117 Berlin

Another City is Possible: Practices of the Minimum Viable Utopia

Opening keynote of the symposium Beware of Smart People!

Adam Greenfield, Urbanscale, New York

Respondent: Vanessa Watson, School of Architecture, Planning and Geomatics, University of Cape Town

Welcoming Address: Christine Ahrend, Vice President for Research, Faculty Appointment Matters and Promotion of Young Scientists, TU Berlin

Saturday, June 20, 2015, 10am – 7pm

TU Berlin, Main building, Lichthof, Straße des 17. Juni 135, 10623 Berlin

Beware of Smart People!

Re-defining the Smart City Paradigm towards Inclusive Urbanism


9.30 am

10.00 am - 10.20 am
Introduction by TU Dialogue Platform Smart People & Urban Commoning

10.20 am - 12.20 pm
Urbanizing the Smart City
Chair: Johanna Schlaack /  Angela Million / Andreas Brück  
Mark Deakin (Institute for Informatics & Digital Innovation, Edinburgh Napier University), 
Saskia Sassen (Department of Sociology, Columbia University), 
Alberto Vanolo (Dipartimento Culture, Politica e Società, Università degli Studi di Torino)

13.30 - 15.30 pm

Smart People and Urban Governance
Chair: Carolin Schröder / Philipp Misselwitz
Gudrun Haindlmaier (Fachbereich Stadt- und Regionalforschung, TU Wien), 
Ayona Datta (Leeds University), 
Ola Söderström (Institut de Géographie, Université de Neuchâtel)

16.00 - 18.00 pm
Session 3: PRACTICE

Space Production and Practices of Urban Commoning
Chair: Sybille Frank /  Jörg Stollmann
Gautam Bhan (Indian Institute of Human Settlements, Bangalore), 
Friederike Habermann (Writer), 
Colin McFarlane (Department of Geography, Durham University)

18.15 pm
Final Roundtable


The symposium was organized by:

Dialogplattform Smart People & Urban Commoning, TU Berlin

Jörg Stollmann, FG Städtebau und Urbanisierung

Sybille Frank, FG Stadt-und Regionalsoziologie

Angela Million, Andreas Brück, FG Städtebau und Siedlungswesen

Philipp Misselwitz, Habitat Unit ‐ FG Entwerfen und internationale Urbanistik

Johanna Schlaack, Center for Metropolitan Studies

Carolin Schröder, Zentrum Technik und Gesellschaft





Opening Keynote of the Symposium Beware of Smart People!

Symposium Beware of Smart People!

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