Living Labs at the Global Science, Technology & Innovation Conference

On Monday 23rd October and Tuesday 24th October, living labs were actively participating at the first Global Science, Technology & Innovation Conference (G-STIC) that took place in Brussels. The aim was the conference was to facilitate the world-wide implementation of the Sustainable Development Goals while ENoLL's role was to present the work of Living Labs and position them next to the SGDs. After the intensive two days we have discovered that Living Labs contribute to the implementation of all but one SDG - life under water. 

ENoLL was involved in the ICT as enabling technology session and presented the network, its activities and members to the G-STIC participants at the ICT Island. Secretary of ENoLL, Pieter Ballon spoke at the first ICT session on the 23rd October. The panelists which spoke at the ICT session that took place in the afternoon of the second day of the conference, were ENoLL President and Laurea Director Tuija Hirvikoski (Laurea Living Lab), Dr. Dimitri Schuurman (imec Living Lab), Dr. Belinda Chen (Taiwan Living Lab), ENoLL Vice President Artur Serra (i2Cat), Phil Donaldson (Adelaide Living Lab), Adam Olszewski (Poznan Living Lab). Zsuzsanna Bodi, who is managing the association of Living Labs has opened the session to present the network and its 11-year long history.

The network actually stems from an EU project and has successfully been expanding since its conception in 2006. Bodi highlighted ambitions of the network, which are to support Living Labs, create studies that help policy makers and lobby for policies and initiatives that are in line with ENoLL’s interest. The network is also aiming to create transnational and open innovation platforms. Three main pillars are targeted:
- Social Innovation (citizen driven),
- Industrial demonstration (test-beds) and
- Open Science (3Os strategy).

Varied work of the network can also be seen through its engagement in diverse projects that cover many different fields – to which ENoLL provides citizen engagement through living labs. The projects work in spheres, such as Smart Cities (SynchroniCity, UNaLAB), climate and air pollution (iSCAPE and EU-MACS) and Internet of things (U4IoT). A study that was made jointly by ENoLL, Laurea University, and published by the European Commission “Cities as Living Labs” investigated the impact of investment in circular economy. According to the study there is a strong correlation between cities with strong urban strategies (and open innovation ecosystems) and cities that are receiving EU funding through H2020 or FP7 projects.

- Adelaide Living Lab

Next, Living Lab experts from different Global Living Labs presented their activities and positioned them next to the Sustainability Development Goals. Phil Donaldson spoke about Australian Adelaide Living Laboratories. Adelaide Living Lab tests smart city ideas and prototypes them. Aim of the city is to become carbon neutral, sustainable and climate resilient. The layout, size and scale of the City of Adelaide positions the city perfectly as a “living Lab” for smart city ideas, pilots and projects. The city is embracing living laboratory culture toward innovation and is accelerating sustainability. Aim of Adelaide is to become a “Future City”, which means that it would be resource smart, green and resilient, creative and vibrant, managed and regenerative as well as economic and integrated.


- Poznan Living Lab

The Polish living lab is business oriented. Some of its many activities include building sustainable systems for companies in the area of education and healthcare. One example of such systems is seen in the project Symbi that aims to exchange sensor data and embrace perspectives and expectations of IoT platform owners and their clients addressing value flows, stakeholders, business models and data sharing processes in cross-platform contexts.

- I2Cat, Catlabs project

I2Cat is one of the oldest ENoLL members, with 10 years bellow its belt. It is represented by an active ENoLL Council member, who is also serving as ENoLL’s Vice President looking after the Social Innovation related topics, particularly a vision of European Commissioner Carlos Moedas on “the Lab” – a virtual lab that can reach any country. Living Labs as a new social technology can bring different regional labs together and create a universal innovation system for every citizen. CatLabs are a prototype of such system. The CatLabs platform is a citizen-based open innovation, open research, open to the world platform, since it is generating challenges, offering skills, sharing resources and common training and it is open to every citizen.  

- imec Living Lab

The Belgian Living Lab provides entrepreneurial living lab services. The Living Lab improves digital innovations by actively involving users and experts through co-creation and real-life intervention. Dr Dimitri Schuurman who presented the Living Lab at the G-STIC, revealed to the audience that 60% of imec’s entrepreneurial service projects are linked to sustainability development goals (particularly goals number 3,4,7,8,9,11,12 and 17). Examples of such projects include “For Good” – scanning app to stimulate sustainable buying, “Nazka/Airchecker” – platform for collecting and visualizing air quality, “Partago” – electrical car sharing app in Ghent, “Ovam Symbiosis” platform – transforming the ad hoc Symbiose matchmaking process into an online platform and the “City of Things” – in Antwerp.


- Living Lab Taiwan

The Taiwanese Living Lab was established by the Institure for Information Industry and began its operation in 2008. The Living Lab links cross-field innovation, creativity, community and entrepreneurship. Some of its activities include service design workshops, hackatons, Living Lab trials and service testing activities with users. Examples of such trials include service trials of inMedia, integration of wearable devices and exercise management (which won the BestLivingLab Project Award of 2016). The Living Lab work with public and private organizations on different products

- DigiArt Living Lab

In a video message, Samia Chelbi addressed the audience to describe activities of the Tunisian-based Living Lab – DigiArt. This Living Lab is serving as a collaborative platform for design, art and science and engages different partners. Some of its projects include JamToday, Creation Journalism and Digital Story telling. 


PowerPoint presentation of all speakers can be found on ENoLL's SlideShare account.