Smart Cities addresses a variety of topics from the perspective that smart and innovative solutions are required for the built environment. Implementing these solutions is challenging; life in a city is dynamic because of the numerous participants that are involved, all with different needs, interests, and expectations. Further challenges include the jumble of clear and unclear interaction of users, and the continuous developments in boundary conditions. Yet, on the other hand cities are quite static too, as it takes many years, many time-consuming administrative measures, and often judicial processes to implement a real reform. A process of 10 years from idea to implementation is rather the rule than the exception for urban changes.
Setup of the track
The honors program consists of lectures as well as team work regarding a self–chosen project in the context of one research topic of the Department of the Built Environment ('Sustainable Transformation', 'Smart Living Environments', or 'Sustainable Transformation'). We strongly believe that honors students are well equipped to define a self-chosen assignment on a specific topic.
To facilitate the selection of a specific topic in the scope of Smart Cities, we first start with a compact series of lectures/talks/discussions, organized by the participating students. At the start, we will ask students to form groups of two or three, and to select a specific topic for gathering information. As a result, each group prepares one specific topic that will be discussed in a mutual meeting. Each group will invite an expert, arrange discussion (or brainstorm), etcetera.
After completion of the initial series of lectures/talks/discussions, we expect all students of this honor track to be familiar with several topics regarding Smart Cities (and are also acquainted to one another), we start with the assignments by making teams of 3-6 student on a specific theme. In consultation with the track coordinator students will formulate a dedicated assignment and address the definition of the problem.
Examples of topics
Topics related to Smart Cities offer many challenges that can be approached from different angles; and various scenarios for future urban development can be considered in this honors track. The following list offers some examples. This is just a very small selection, however, and many more examples can be considered.
- Smart Energy
- Smart Environment
- Smart Mobility
- Smart Infrastructure
- Smart Technology
- Smart People, Smart Living
- Smart Healthcare
- Smart Economy
- Smart Decathlon Competition
These topics, together with a brief explanation can be downloaded here.