Renown architect, Rem Koolhaas, has a great article about Cities that are truly smart in the Lisbon Council’s Digital Europe report. He focuses on what it means to have community rather than just imagined mechanistic order and predictability without understanding disorder and complexity.
“Architecture used to be about the creation of community, and making the best effort at symbolising that community. Since the triumph of the market economy in the late 1970s, architecture no longer expresses public values but instead the values of the private sector.
When we look at the visual language through which the smart city is represented, it is typically with simplistic, child-like rounded edges and bright colours. The citizens the smart city claims to serve are treated like infants. We are fed cute icons of urban life, integrated with harmless devices, cohering into pleasant diagrams in which citizens and business are surrounded by more and more circles of service that create bubbles of control. Why do smart cities offer only improvement? Where is the possibility of transgression?
… if you look at Silicon Valley, you see that the greatest innovators in the digital field have created a bland suburban environment that is becoming increasingly exclusive, its tech bubbles insulated from the public sphere.
[Look for the paper under ‘Download Digital Minds for a New Europe’]
Rem Koolhaas in Digital Minds for a New Europe
“The Lisbon Council for Economic Competitiveness and Social Renewal is a think tank and policy network committed to defining and articulating a mature strategy for managing current and future challenges.”