A Smart Arctic Future - Smart city development


  • 15:00 Questions for the Arctic Digital City - a Critique of Design, Digitalisation and 'Smart Cities'
    Authors: Einar Sneve Martinussen ( Oslo School of Architecture and Design )

    Over the last 10 years we have witnessed an increasing, if yet under-defined, digitalisation of cities, industries and societies. The technology-optimistic visions of the ‘smart city’, or the ‘smart future’, have become a global, hegemonic ideal for sustainable, profitable and effective societal development. It is important to recognise that this proposed ‘smart’, digital future comes out of technology-deterministic thinking that brings with it a mindset that sees cities, and societies, as sets of problems that can, and should, be quantified, controllable and optimised through technology. The ‘smart city’ mindset and strategy is being promoted by global digital industries, as well as being adopted in governance and policymaking across the world. At the same time the ‘digital shift’ is making its mark across all aspects of society. Dominant global actors (such as Amazon, Airbnb, Uber or Google) deliver discrete digital services across the world that cater to individual, and often privileged, desires and needs. These services and platforms have great impact on daily life and local environments, but are often outside regulations and local policies. Importantly, the digital industries deliver generalisable, self-contained services that are designed for specific users and use-cases in specific kinds of cities, at the same time this also has implications for societal planning, technological development, and everyday life everywhere, including the Arctic. It is therefore important to question which digital futures are made possible, or impossible, by the current processes of digitalisation.

    Even if ‘smart cities’, ‘smart futures’ and ‘smart governance’ are hot topics in urban policy and administration, critical thinking directed towards the evolving regime of the ‘digitalisation’ is underdeveloped both in design, planning and politics. Today, challenges are being overlooked, and the democratic and inclusive possibilities of the digital city are not being pursued. In this presentation I therefore argue that a first step should be to address the digitalisation of cities and societies as a debate about societal values, culture and democracy, and not just about technology. Instead of adopting the dominant arguments and practices of the global, often Silicon Valley-based digital industry, we should instead develop our own models and designs for the digitalisation of cities and societies. An Arctic model for digitalisation should both reflect, develop and protect the societal, ecological and democratic potential of the Arctic, while also exploring how digital technologies and services can contribute to futures grounded in the Arctic.

  • 15:30 Mapping participatory governance practices and smart city initiatives in the High North
    Authors: Evgenii Aleksandrov ( Nord University Business School ); Anatoli Bourmistrov ( Nord University Business School ); Elena Dybtsyna ( Nord University Business School ); Marina Giltman ( Tumen State University ); Igor Khodacheck ( Russian Academy of National Economy and Public Administration ); Alexandra Middleton ( University of Oulu ); Andreas Raspotnik ( Nord University Business School )

    The growing use of ICT technology and so-called smart city-, community- or region concepts opens up new areas for public innovation, especially regarding the development of local dimension of governance in the High North. Such innovations can give greater voice to local stakeholders, in relation to strategic, urban and financial planning decisions in the High North territories, i.e. form participatory governance (PG). However, knowledge about the existing and new practices of local stakeholders’ involvement/participation in the context of the High North is mostly missing, especially when it comes to its combination with smart city intiatives.

    In this regard, the aim of the study is to map and reveal PG experiences in the High North through an extensive media content review, limited by the context of the High North or similar (e.g. harsh and depopulated areas). Specifically, we review articles, chronicles and archival materials available in online news (e.g. news and archival websites), newspapers (e.g. via library subscription news sources) and magazine-format newspapers (e.g. The Economist). The review will be limited to the time frame of 15 years, justified by the development of the PG agenda during the beginning of the 2000s. The review addresses the following questions:

    • What PG experiences can be documented in the High North communities, and how are they discussed in the media?
    • What can we learn from the media about the value of PG for the High North and its sustainable development?
    • How are PG media discourses in the High North comparable with general experiences of PG in other contexts?

    As a result, the study presents the comprehensive oveview of existing practices of local stakeholders’ involvement/participation in the context of the High North and its relation to smart city initiatives and sustainable development in the High North. 

  • 15:45 A smart city concept in the Arctic - from a post-industrial to liveable city
    Authors: Nikolai Bobylev ( Saint Petersburg State University ); Veli-Pekka Tykynnen ( University of Helsinki ); Marian Paschke ( Universität Hamburg ); Alexander Sergunin ( Saint Petersburg State University )

    The presentation reports aspirations and ongoing progress of the multilateral research project on Opportunities for and challenges to urban development and social cohesion in Russia's Arctic under climate change impacts, to be financed by ERA.Net RUS Plus initiative and its 2017 call for “S&T projects”; proposal: ID # 527 – AUCAM. The project has started in 2018 and include three partners: Saint Petersburg State University, University of Helsinki, and University of Hamburg. The project aims to build a sustainable development/social cohesion strategy for the Russian Arctic towns including smart city concept to mitigate numerous socio-economic and environmental challenges and threats in the age of climate change. The project results will contribute to the development of a strategic management system in the Arctic Zone of the Russian Federation (AZRF) on a number of levels (municipal, regional and national) as well as for international cooperation in the Arctic. The presentation will report on: (1)  adaptation of the principles and approaches of sustainable development in the AZRF’s towns, investigated via a desk study of municipal development strategies (strategic planning documents); (2) spatial urban development plans, and strategic planning documents investigated trough a prism of resiliency and smart cities approaches, based on the UNHabitat methodology to assess and mainstream resiliency and UN Smart for Sustainability alliance guidelines to integrate smart city approaches.

  • 16:00 Smart and Sustainable Arctic Cities: the Russian perspective
    Authors: Irina A. Shmeleva ( ITMO University ); Stanislav Shmelev ( Environment Europe Ltd )

    Achieving sustainability in the Arctic cities of Russia is a great challenge. Harsh climatic conditions, traditional focus on resource extraction and high levels of pollution in industrial centres need to be tackled with green economy instruments and programmes. In this study we have assessed sustainability performance of 14 Russian artic cities: Murmansk, Archangels, Apatity, Naryan Mar, Vorkuta, Nadym, Salehard, Novy Urengoy, Noyabrsk, Norilsk, Hatanga, Anadyr, Magadan and Yakutsk, a combined total 1.7 mln inhabitants out 2.1 mln total population of the Russian arctic. We have chosen a balanced set of 9 economic: GRP per person, Investment per capita and Resource extraction; social: Education level, unemployment and crime rates and, finally, environmental criteria: Total emissions, forest cover, and lung diseases caused by environmental pollution. The Russian arctic cities differ tremendously on the indicators mentioned above with Investment per capita ranging from 1000 euro per person per year to more than 25000 euro per person per year. High investment attracts highly qualified staff and leads to higher GDP rates. The focus of the economy in the Russian arctic in predominantly on resource extraction and processing, which leads to high environmental pollution. E.g. total emissions of SO2 in Norilsk reach the level of 1.7 mln tonnes per year. The number of cases of lung diseases correlate strongly with pollution levels. E.g. the highest rates of lung disease range from 706 cases per 1000 people in Anadyr, 602 in Noyabrsk and Novy Urengoy and 538 in Salekhard, Nadym and Yakoutsk. In addition several smart dimensions were considered: the mobile internet speed in the Russian Arctic ranges from 19.23 mbit/s in Murmansk to 0.82 mbit/s in Anadyr.

    In December 2017 Roshydromet announced intencification of control of the air pollution and air quality in Arctic cities. New controll stations will be introduced within the program of Socio-Economic Development in the Arctic for 2012-2025, including 13 new measurement stations, 4 IT centres and 6 mobile ecolabs. The main polluters in the Arctic are big industrial enterprises focusing on paper manufacturing, energy production, shipbuilding and mechanical engineering. The discussion regarding developing smart Russian Arctic cities has started in 2018.

Science Science

Wednesday 23rd January 2019

15:00 - 16:15

Clarion Hotel The Edge - Kjøpmannskontoret

Add to Calendar 2019-01-23 15:00 2019-01-23 16:15 Europe/Oslo A Smart Arctic Future - Smart city development Clarion Hotel The Edge - Kjøpmannskontoret

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