[CITASA] Shitty Glitches in Smart Cities Workshop: Digital Guano for Knowledge and Action in the City

Laura Forlano lef45 at columbia.edu
Mon Feb 8 15:19:15 EST 2016

CFP - Shitty Glitches in Smart Cities Workshop: Digital Guano for Knowledge and Action in the City (digitalguano.wordpress.com <http://digitalguano.wordpress.com/>)
April 22, 2016

Design & The City <http://designandthecity.eu/>
Amsterdam, The Netherlands

The shift of focus from smart cities to people as the most important actors in urban environments is a welcome one. This also brings to the fore the need to carefully consider contestations and resistance, which are “the foundation of urbanity or cityness”[1 <https://digitalguano.wordpress.com/#_ENREF_1>]. These emerge as ephemeral and complex culminations of both the visible and invisible – e.g. emotions, tacit, and sensory knowledge – within the environment in question to problematise/disrupt/counter the polished and positivist ideal of the smart city.

Indeed, the city has always been a fertile breeding ground for radical, revolutionary ideas that were born in the back alleys and dark gutters, run-down hoods and ‘on the wrong sides of the tracks,’ rather than in the bright lights of arcades and broad avenues. The current smart cities discourse promoting large-scale corporate urban projects overwrites this urban palimpsest and limits the ability of “those without power … to make a history and a culture” [2 <https://digitalguano.wordpress.com/#_ENREF_2>]. Our workshop explores how the smart city’s invisible infrastructure that intends to reveal and act on all kinds of dark corners of the city, has similar sanitising effects, and importantly, how it may leave room for or arouse urban glitches through chaos, resistance, unpredictability, and creative or plain destruction.

We use the metaphor of “guano” to refer to these glitches and their related tactics, because, though they may be considered foul in the controlled urban environments, they can be useful fertilisers for civic action, evoking and enriching participation of publics. Digital guano in this sense can provide a fertile ground for anarcho-epistemological or ludo-epistemological knowledge production for action, which invites us to revisit the notion of citizen science as initially proposed by Feyerabend [3 <https://digitalguano.wordpress.com/#_ENREF_3>]. This workshop will help us explore these issues by asking:
How might we imagine and create the infrastructure that would enable this digital guano to settle in and feed the city?

Interested participants should submit two-page position papers to Jaz (h.choi [at] qut.edu.au <http://qut.edu.au/>) outlining their work, brief biography, and what they would like to gain from and bring to the workshop by March 1, 2016. Participants will be selected based on their expertise and to ensure overall disciplinary and geo-cultural diversity.

Jaz Hee-jeong Choi, Queensland University of Technology, Australia
Balazs Bodo, University of Amsterdam
Sybille Lammes, University of Warwick
Laura Forlano, Illinois Institute of Technology
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