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.

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.

Exploring Co-Agency in Human-Machine Assemblages: Toward a Methodology for Collective Intelligence Design

by David Crombie, Soenke Zehle

Category: Research-in-progress


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

Abstract. The rise of new forms of human-machine collaboration raises questions for living lab
methodologies that aim to comprehend machines as elements in complex dynamic
systems rather than distinct technological objects. We argue that it makes sense to
approach infrastructures integrating human and machinic agency as stacks, building
on an existing systems design discourse that already adopts a holistic view of the
integration of soft- and hardware as well as dynamic contexts. The goal of this paper
is to make the case that such an approach facilitates the creation of new living lab
methodologies and encourages actors to reexamine the common sense informing
our concepts of human and machinic agency.

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.

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: