1/2010 - 04/2013
The objective of the Urban Flows and Networks project is to utilize the data produced by Oulu’s UPI (Urban Pervasive Infrastructure) and other sources for modeling and exploiting urban flows and networks of everyday life of the City of Oulu. The project aims to develop services that better fulfill Oulu’s stakeholders’ needs. The project studies the city’s transport and pedestrians’ behavior as well as social networking in an urban environment.
The project studies both vehicular transport and pedestrian flows. Vehicular transport has typically been modeled with time-consuming and expensive human surveys. The UPI allows passive and anonymous collection of information about vehicles’ and people’s trips across the city. The collected data will be used in generating an origin-destination matrix for transport which is the cornerstone of designing efficient transport.
Pedestrian flows are crucial in understanding the micro-economy of a city. There is a cyclic connection between pedestrians and local economy: pedestrians tend to go to shops and shops tend to be established where pedestrians dwell. As vehicular transport, pedestrian flows have typically been modeled with human surveys. Oulu’s UPI enables the analyzing of pedestrian routes across the city. The collected data can be utilized to provide various personalized services to individuals as well as to identify opportunities for the local economy.
The project also studies social networking in an urban environment. Internet services that provide opportunities for social networking, such as Facebook, are popular because they increase individuals’ means for social networking. The UPI will be used in the project for identifying the social networking opportunities among the citizens of Oulu by analyzing encounters between people. The significance and practical applicability of results will be demonstrated via empirical evaluation of different prototypes in an authentic environment of use.
The data produced by the Oulu’s UPI describe a significant part of everyday life and activities of the city. One of the most important qualities is mobility which has become even more crucial factor in the use of Urban Pervasive Infrastructure and the needs of the users. Urban Flows and Networks project is a part of the FiDiPro – Finland Distinguished Professor Programme funded by Tekes and the Academy of Finland. FiDiPro Fellow Vasillis Kostakos, who works as Assistant Professor in Madeira Interactive Technologies Institute at the University of Madeira and holds an adjunct faculty appointment at Carnegie Mellon University, will join MediaTeam Oulu. Researchers from the University of Madeira and University of Oulu are also involved in the project.
Financiers and Business Partners
City of Oulu
Oulu Business Coalition
Center for Economic Development, Transport and the Environment of Northern Ostrobothnia
Research Program Affiliation