Tools & technologies for user-centric innovation


Prof. Dr. An Jacobs & Dr. Klaas Bombeke

Submissions to this track deal with (digital) tools & supporting technologies and technical evolutions that (can) have an impact on Living Lab theory and practice. The focus is not on the technologies or tools per se, but on their (potential) impact for user-centric innovation.

Developing open technology solutions in simulated living lab

by Nikki Holliday, T. Molitor, C. Clarck

Category: Research-in-progress


  • living lab
  • simulation
  • open source
  • electronic health records
  • Covid-19

Abstract. Many patients still experience sub-optimal care leading to adverse outcomes such as unplanned Intensive Care Unit admission, emergency surgery, cardiac arrest, and death. Electronic Health record software has the potential to support improved identification of those at risk of deterioration, however existing proprietary software solutions are costly and not always fit for purpose. This paper describes a research project supporting the development of a new EHR open source software application which will be developed with users in a simulated living lab environment, the impact of Covid-19 on face to face data collection, and the steps the research team are taking to ensure work continues in the current global pandemic crisis.

Nikki Holliday

Design Manager at the Centre for Intelligent Healthcare

Examining people’s implicit smartphone use attitudes via an adapted IAT procedure

by Floor Denecker, Lieven De Marez, Koen Ponnet

Category: Research-in-progress


  • IAT task

  • Implicit measures 

  • Smartphone use attitudes

  • Multimethod research

Abstract. This paper proposes an adapted IAT procedure. In this case, it is specifically used to examine adults’ attitudes towards smartphone use in particular situations. Just as in the ‘normal’ IAT procedure, the D score between the incongruent and congruent block is calculated for each participant, to examine the strength of the examined implicit association (Hargadon, Macdonald, and Fabrigar 2018). However, the analysis of the adapted IAT procedure is somewhat different. First, the consistency rates in participants responses are computed. Next, the categorization proportions for each situations are examined for each situation. In this way, ‘appropriateness’ consensus is investigated. To end, the D scores are calculated for each condition, seen as a combination of situation and categorization. The proposed adapted IAT procedure can offer interesting insights into aspects that are not otherwise accessible via explicit self-reports (Nosek, Hawkins, and Frazier 2011) and can be an interesting addition to multimethod research.

Floor Denecker

Teaching assistant, PhD candidate & junior researcher at the research group for Media, Innovation, and Communication technologies at Ghent University

MazeMakers: Co-Creating a Collective Intelligence Design Stack

by David Crombie, Soenke Zehle

Category: Research-in-progress


  • collective intelligence design
  • human-computer interaction
  • collective agency

Abstract. In the early 21st century, we effectively live in the stack. The “accidental megastructures” (Bratton 2014) of the multiple technological infrastructures and data-driven platforms – the stacks – sustaining our ways of life effectively structure how we relate to ourselves, to each other, and to the world around us. Arguably the greatest obstacle to innovation in Europe is that we cannot anticipate a radical redesign of these stacks. By definition, a new stack lays the foundation of new future and emerging technologies. Influential open tech stack models include the OSI and TCP/IP stack, the most influential (market-creating) stacks are those of major platform providers (Airbnb, Amazon, Facebook, Slack, Uber). To address the dominance of these players requires challenging the dominance of these underlying technology stacks. We argue that because at the heart of each innovation ecosystem is a technology stack, we need new stacks for a new ecosystem to emerge. MazeMakers imagines a new stack for collective intelligence design as a key enabling technology to encourage and amplify emerging forms of human-machine collaboration.


David Crombie


Soenke Zehle


Using mobileDNA as an instrument for smartphone logging to explore the relationship between smartphone usage and personality traits

by Mathias Maes, Wouter Durnez

Category: Research-in-progress


  • smartphone usage
  • log data
  • mobileDNA
  • personality traits
  • Big Five

Abstract. Smartphones have become severely embedded into the daily life of people, offering anyplace anytime connectedness. Their portability and embeddedness throughout people’s daily routines have made them a potential instrument for tracking and logging smartphone use data. As smartphones are considered an extension of the self, this raises the question whether smartphone log data can be used to explore the relationship between smartphone usage and personality traits. This paper proposes a study to gain further insight in this relationship through the use of a smartphone logging application called ‘mobileDNA’. We argue that, in comparison to previous research, mobileDNA has the capacity to provide more granular insight into smartphone usage. The purpose of this study is two-fold: to gain a deeper understanding of how self-reported personality traits can be reflected in the individual’s smartphone usage and to further establish and validate mobileDNA as a leading tool for smartphone logging and a complement and/or substitute to other data collection

Finding citizens insights: a digital deep dive into everyday life in Smart Kalasatama

by Mette Hiltunen, Michel Nader Sayún

Category: Practitioners papers 


  •  citizen engagement
  • digital participation
  • participatory methods
  • smart cities
  • inclusivity

Abstract. In urban living labs, active citizen engagement is in the center of citizen-centric innovation. In Smart Kalasatama, the smart district of Helsinki, a six-week deep dive study with seven local households was conducted in the spring of 2020. The study was entirely carried out with digital participation tools by utilising the software Miro as a platform for online collaboration between the interviewer and interviewees. Visual digital boards were prepared to support the weekly interviews and were used to collect detailed qualitative insights about the participants’ everyday experiences and observations of the services, activities and smart solutions piloted and implemented in Kalasatama. Digital tools were found to be an effective approach to engage citizens as they allowed diverse participation and a deeper reflection while requiring less effort than traditional participatory research methods. The deep dive study can be replicated and applied to other living lab activities in the future.

Mette Hiltunen

Project Planner

Neural Rope #1: an urban collaborative project between art and scientific research

by Elena Marchiori & Luca Maria Gambardella

Category: Practitioners papers 


  •  collaborative project
  • urban art
  •  living lab
  • public space
  •  informal learning
  • artificial intelligence

Abstract. On Sept. 2nd 2019 a new permanent interactive installation named "NeuralRope#1 Inside an Artificial Brain” located at the pedestrian tunnel in Besso-Lugano, Switzerland has been freely opened to the public. "NeuralRope#1” is an initiative of L*3 – Lugano Living Lab which facilitated the creation of this collaborative work between institutions (City of Lugano and local universities), the local artist Alex Dorici, and the scientist prof. Luca Maria Gambardella from IDSIA (Dalle Molle Institute for Artificial Intelligence, USI-SUPSI). "NeuralRope#1" represents an artificial neuronal network installed in the Besso pedestrian tunnel (length of the tunnel: 100 metres). The installation reproduces in three dimensions a large neural network using several LED screens, which are constantly operating 24/7. The installation interact through cameras with people who are walking through the tunnel. NeuralRope#1 represents a best practice of profitable collaboration between institutions, art and scientific research. Indeed, it demonstrates the opportunities to use public spaces which combine urban art and informal learning solutions. NeuralRope#1 represents a valid informal learning solution to present to public what is Artificial Intelligence and how it works. NeuralRope#1 learns from humans to interpret autonomously the environment that surrounds it. Lugano Living Lab played a crucial role in facilitating all the actors involved in the project and its development. At the same time by ensuring the openness of the project in terms of accessibility, understating, dissemination and open data. More info about the project:

Elena Marchiori

Scientific collaborator & general secretary of the Swiss Chapter of IFITT - International Federation for Information Technologies in Travel and Tourism