Contributive city:

The Bristol Approach
for Citizen Sensing

The Bristol Approach is a framework for running inclusive,
community-driven digital projects that involve sensor technologies and data

Bristol becoming a ‘smart city’

How can Smart City technologies scale up beyond short-lived pilot interventions? How can they be citizen-centred, sustainable and inclusive rather than a technology push? Together with KWMC and Bristol City Council, we have developed a framework for running inclusive, sustainable and scalable, community-driven data and technology projects. The City Commons Framework provides a methodology to catalyse a new wave in Smart City design that challenges existing power structures, amplifies the range of available solutions to urban issues and therefore creates value and opportunities for all.

The framework

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The Bristol Approach is a new way of working that ensures that Smart City technologies and programmes address the needs and priorities of the people who will use them. The model comprises six phases and it has been structured to ensure that community technology programmes are driven by issues that are relevant to local needs and take place at community level, with local people actively involved in design, testing and evaluation.

Citizen Sensing

Citizen sensing is a socio-technical process in which citizens use lightweight sensor technologies to collectively monitor their environment by gathering and sharing data. Beyond its great potential to develop collaborative and open cities , most of the citizen sensing initiatives deployed have not been sustainable and scalable projects. Through our research we’ve identified the challenges and opportunities related to participatory sensing processes:

  • Problems with the technology setup and use.
  • Deficient data quality and sensing technologies.
  • Difficulties in understanding the data.
  • Lack of specific applications for the data collected.
  • Need of a engagement process.
  • Lack of connection with the general context and the purpose of the data collection.

Bristol Approach to Citizen Sensing

The Bristol Approach is done in collaboration with

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Want to know more?

Get the last report of the Bristol Approach