Thursday, 25 November 2010

news-phd position

The Department of Architecture, Urban Design and Regional Planning at the KULeuven, Belgium offers 2 PhD positions

Key words: urban computing, data visualization, urban display, human-computer interaction, urban planning, interaction design


New Paradigms for the Public Visualization of Urban Data
Promoter: Andrew Vande Moere

Description: The aim of this project is to investigate new visualization and interface paradigms (e.g. "urban display") that augment the civic literacy of everyday citizens. At the same time, it is the goal to provide urban designers with richer datasets for modeling and analysis, through the mediation of information concerning, and also literally situated within, the urban environment. It will evaluate how the increased awareness and participation of both planners as inhabitants can act as a potential intervention method in addressing the living quality of urban cities. New forms of spatial population density, poverty, crime, pollution and high levels of social fragmentation are arguably some of the most acute threats that face a sustainable city development today. Therefore, more knowledge is required on how the interaction with citizens can become more compelling, and how the access to relevant urban information can be ?democratized? by empowering people to participate in
the exploration of the sustainable development of their own neighborhood.

The project is interdisciplinary in nature, and will be accomplished in close collaboration with researchers from the areas of Hypermedia and Databases (Prof. Erik Duval), Urban Planning (Prof. Jan Schreurs), and the Centre for User Experience Research (Prof. Dirk De Grooff).

We seek 2 PhD students. One student will focus on the technological implications and innovations of the visualization and display of situated data within a public context. He/she will have experience in human-computer interaction, physical computing or data visualization, and be responsible for the design, development and evaluation of the technological aspects of this project. The second student will target this proposal from a more social perspective, and will investigate the potential of data visualization as a medium in augmenting the relationships between the citizen, the urban planner, and the built environment. He/she should at least have a high degree of interest in computing and/or visualization, and have experience in social sciences (e.g. user experience research) and/or urbanism.

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