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How Digitalization Will Change the Urban


Monday, December 2
12.15 pm – 3 pm
Foyer SG (SG Building)


The digital transition has a distinct and lasting impact on the urban way of living. Self-driving cars, e-commerce delivery, the Internet of Things, AI and 3D printing are already pushing their way through the everyday life and changing how individuals interact with their social, natural and built environment. Likewise, new digital tools offer novel means to manage production, agriculture and the relation to work and working spaces. For urban populations, the risk of dual-usage technology is also a pressing concern. For example, the monitoring of public space usage by thermal sensors and facial recognition are examples of technological innovations that can be as useful as problematic for the governance of cities.

Beyond the opaque notion of a “smart” city, today’s digital transition cannot be conceived outside of its urban context. As a result, the urban (humans’ main form of habitat) offers a necessary lens through which to consider new digital ecosystems, their potential and their risks. In order to address this research gap from an interdisciplinary perspective, the Habitat Research Center (ENAC-HRC) and the UNIL-EPFL Joint Center for Digital Studies for the Arts, Humanities and Social Sciences (dhCenter UNIL-EPFL) invite members of the EPFL and UNIL communities for a workshop on how digitalization is changing the urban.


A call for participation is now open and EPFL and UNIL researchers are strongly encouraged to apply. The workshop will be the occasion to present your current work on how digitalization is changing the urban, and discuss your interest in future research collaborations on the topic.

We are especially interested in projects related but not limited to how digitalization is changing commerce, work, agriculture and the production within the urban, how these changes differ across levels of urbanization: the city, the suburbs, the countryside, etc., and how they impact the experience of these social, natural and built spaces.

The workshop will take place on Monday, December 2nd at 12.15 pm in the Foyer SG (SG Building) of the EPFL campus.

We invite those interested in this topic to either briefly present their work on the topic or take part to the discussion. Presentations are limited to 8 minutes per project.

How to participate

In order to participate, send a notice of interest to Qinyi Zhang (
Please include the following information in your email:

  • A brief description of your interest in the tropic (2-3 sentences);
  • Specify if you will be presenting or simply taking part to the discussion;
  • The names and affiliation of the people of your team (including yourself) who will attend the workshop.
From: 2 Dec, 2019
To: 2 Dec, 2019
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