The Alexandra Institute // Cases // Digital Neighbourhood

Digital Neighbourhood


Digital Neighbourhood

How to inform, involve and communicate with citizens through the increased use of digital media

We have developed digital-physical prototypes in the urban area to promote citizenship and a sense of commitment for the citizens

The public sector in Denmark is facing a paradigm shift in the way in which we communicate with citizens. A result of this process is that access points have become mainly digital, whereas previously citizens had to present themselves in person. The purpose of the project was to find out how we can inform, involve and enter into a dialogue with citizens in new ways through the increased use and roll-out of digital solutions in the urban landscape.

The project was a collaboration between the City of Aarhus and the Alexandra Institute with the main purpose to strengthen the dialogue between Citizens’ Services and citizens and to encourage engagement through digital-physical prototypes in the urban landscape. In this project we developed and tested initiatives that could improve the citizens' approach to digital solutions.

By working actively with citizen involvement, through installations in the neighbourhood, competitions and the visualisation of relevant data, we expect the project to provide us with valuable experience and potential models for a new type of dialogue with citizens based on a new digital paradigm.

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The start-up and first phase included workshops of which the main aim was to bring interdisciplinary knowledge into play. Here we focused on discussing how to work with digital-physical prototypes in the urban space to promote a greater sense of commitment among the locals. Students from five different study programmes made urban space analyzes in five different neighbourhoods, which included interviews and mapping of the areas.

The project was experimental, and various technologies and methods were tested in the process.

In the first prototype we worked primarily with RFID tokens that allows people to submit ideas into a prototype in the urban space. The prototype includes both RFID readers, a hacked keyboard, a digital interface and audio input/output.

We were inspired by the traditional urban space installations, the telephone box that many people (especially from an older generation) associate with as a of symbol of communication in the public space.

Aarhus Kommune, Borgerservice
Sager der Samler
Aarhus Universitet, Institut for Datalogi
Aarhus Universitet, IT produktudvikling
Aarhus Universitet, Urban Computing
Aarhus Universitet, Institut for Kultur og Samfund - Antropologi
Arkitektskolen Aarhus
Via University College

Projektets totale budget er på 1.800.000 kr.

Projektet blev finansieret gennem midler fra Aarhus Kommunes Innovationspulje og kørte indtil december 2015.

Vi hjalp Aarhus Kommune med at komme i dialog med borgere og brugere.
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