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Smart Citizen Game

City of Eindhoven

Increase awareness about the potential use of citizen data for the making of cities among residents.


Eindhoven, The Netherlands

Partners: Gemeente Eindhoven

3 Sessions with 60 Participants

The Smart Citizen Game is designed to interpret, generate and manage data used to plan our cities. The game was first developed for the City of Eindhoven in collaboration with DATAstudio, a joint programme between Het Nieuwe Instituut and the City of Eindhoven. Smart Citizen Game has a format to be localized for cities worldwide.

Cities increasingly integrate information and communication technology [ICT] and Internet of things [IoT] technology to manage their assets. New policies rely on the digital inputs provided from these channels. The game focuses on questions related to this process. Can we open up policy making and make it smarter by sourcing the intelligence of players outside the local government? How can we bring the complicated and intricate data system closer to all players of city making? And finally, how can we create awareness among citizens and use this comprehensive understanding to move on and come up with alternative solutions?

The localized version of this game, called ‘Woenseltopia’ was developed in partnership with the Woensel Noord local government of Eindhoven that wished to encourage conversations between local residents about the future of their environment. Using data as a basis for informed discussion and storytelling, the City of Eindhoven acknowledged that it is important to increase awareness about citizen data amongst its residents. Game players worked through visualised datasets and generated scenarios for a more autonomous Woensel Noord.

Following a fictional narrative introduced by the game master, the game visualises home-sharing and mobility technologies, local food production and distribution, as well as more effective social care strategies. Imagine you wake up in Woensel-Noord one day to find that a wall has been built around the Woenselse Heide and De Tempel neighbourhoods. Nobody can leave or enter the area. How can you maximise the use of living spaces using existing resources? What are the available local resources in terms food, housing, mobility, and care? For instance, who knows how to grow vegetables? How can that knowledge be shared? How many cows will be needed if everyone keeps eating meat, and will there be enough room? Can parking spaces be sacrificed to make way for vegetable gardens? Could elderly people living alone offer space in their homes to visitors unable to leave because of the wall?

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