Data (For) Culture: Conference

Unlike their counterparts in the business world, cultural institutions and event organisers rarely use data to underpin their decision making. What can we learn about the event goers? Can data help understand how culture influences the development of the city? How can you make communication effective in a data culture? Get inspired at the Data For Culture Conference: lectures, expert discussions and hands-on workshops will offer insight!

We have combined the forces of cultural researchers, designers and programmers to see how digital data-driven tools can help us explore cultural events and their role in animating the city centre. Over a period of one year, we have surveyed dozens of large and small events, polling by almost four thousand people. Also, we have collected data from information and social media services about several thousand events held in Katowice since 2010.

©Medialab

We have examined how cultural activities are promoted and commented online by news services and on Facebook. Using Google Maps enabled us to gauge travel times to cultural venues by various means of public transport and to see if residents of the outer districts were not cut off from culture. An application to verify how many of those, who declared their interest in an event on Facebook, actually participated in the events was created. The same data also served us to conduct a network analysis showing what events and institutions have similar audiences.

©Medialab

The results of our study will be presented at the exhibition in the form of visualisations, maps and data exploration tools allowing for independent exploration of knowledge about the transformations taking place in the city through culture.

During the conference, experts from Poland and abroad will discuss a number of topics, including: (a) how to combine traditional methods of cultural research with the analysis of large data sets from the web, primarily from social media; (b) how cultural events (official and grassroots) impact on the city’s development; (c) how social media form a networked public sphere, influencing urban culture through various forms of involvement and participation, (d) how to work with data in an interdisciplinary team while retaining openness and using rapid prototyping tools, (e) how and what tools to use for data analysis and visualisation in order to study and present complex areas such as the cultural life of the city.

Finally, we will give the participants an opportunity to test the tools and issues presented in practice. As part of a series of a dozen or so workshops we will show, among other things, how to prepare an audience survey, use the project approach, and analyse survey data, as well as how to employ data-driven storytelling, create visualisations, and develop a brief for the company we commission to implement digital tools for us.

Register for the conference

Find out the full program of the conference

Find out more about the (in)formal Cultural Actors, the research component of Shared Cities: Creative Momentum

Must Reads

Developing Cultural Formats Through a Community of Inquiry, Miodrag Kuč

The recent revival of the importance of 'communities’ and of ways of reaching them has started to exert an influence on the urban planning level, as evidenced in a striving to engender more inclusion and integration. All of which sounds like a repetition of the old mantra of urban renewal, but this time in an over-accelerated society.

Berlin Permanent link

Vivid Square, Bratislava. Shared Cities Diaries #6

In Central and Eastern Europe we often find common challenges on the municipal level; municipalities work with limited budgets, but typically underuse available resources. In practice, this means that municipalities do not have an abundance of resources to build new public infrastructure or even to reconstruct and maintain the existing one, but they own generous public spaces and other property that requires fixing.

Bratislava Permanent link

Deconstruction and Material Circulation as Ways to Build, interview with Lionel Billet, Rotor, Brussels

If you express the recycling rate in terms of value (the residual value of the recirculated products in relation to the initial value of all building products being discarded), it would be equal to approximately 1%. And that's the way we look at it. We think that next to the logistics of waste management, we need a system that allows us to maintain in circulation elements with a value – this value being of technical, cultural, or economic

Bratislava Permanent link

The physical and social normative properties of street furniture, Mary Dellenbaugh

Public space, in particular in cities, is an important backdrop for gatherings and everyday social life. The organization of public space and the objects in it, most notably street furniture such as benches, bus stop shelters, advertising pollards, and public restrooms, determine which uses are possible or allowed and help to create and confirm norms about how we should move through and use space and which persons or groups are welcome there. In this essay, two aspects of street furniture’s norming function will be discussed: its provision by various entities (public authorities, private contractors and developers) and its physical structure and arrangement.

Berlin Permanent link

Shared Cities Ideas Yard: Data pro kulturu | Data for Culture – Public Panel Discussion

What information can Facebook reveal about organizing cultural events? Who are their participants? How does culture energize our cities? Medialab, an experimental platform from Katowice, presents the results of a unique research study which crunched large amounts of data from field research as well as social media and websites. A complex network that interweaves through the cultural ecosystem of a city was revealed. Join our panel discussion and learn more about how data can be used to develop culture in your city and how to communicate effectively in today’s data culture!

Prague Permanent link

Research Publication on New Media and Infographics

The workshop New Media and Infographics was the second in a series of three curatorial-practice-oriented workshops (publications, data, exhibitions), organized by the Curatorial Lab of the Shared Cities: Creative Momentum project, in order to explore innovative approaches to the sharing of knowledge in architecture, design and urban planning. The Curatorial Lab Workshop on New Media and Infographics featured data visualization and data-driven analysis that represent architecture, urban spaces and culture in an innovative way. This two-day workshop took place in Katowice and was organized by reSITE in collaboration with Medialab Katowice.

Prague Permanent link