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Urban Informatics Research and Insights for Libraries, Cultural Industries and Innovation Systems

Urban Informatics Research and Insights for Libraries, Cultural Industries and Innovation Systems, by Marcus Foth, September 2011

  • “Over less than a decade, we have witnessed a seismic shift in the way knowledge is produced and exchanged. This is opening up new opportunities for civic and community engagement, entrepreneurial behaviour, sustainability initiatives and creative practices. It also has the potential to create fresh challenges in areas of privacy, cyber-security and misuse of data and personal information. The field of urban informatics focuses on the use and impacts of digital media technology in urban environments. Urban informatics is a dynamic and cross-disciplinary area of inquiry that encapsulates social media, ubiquitous computing, mobile applications and location-based services. Its insights suggest the emergence of a new economic force with the potential for driving innovation, wealth and prosperity through technological advances, digital media and online networks that affect patterns of both social and economic development. Urban informatics explores the intersections between people, place and technology, and their implications for creativity, innovation and engagement. This paper examines how the key learnings from this field can be used to position creative and cultural institutions such as galleries, libraries, archives and museums (GLAM) to take advantage of the opportunities presented by these changing social and technological developments. This paper introduces the underlying principles, concepts and research areas of urban informatics, against the backdrop of modern knowledge economies. Both theoretical ideas and empirical examples are covered in this paper.”
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