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IES Cities

IES Cities explored how people can use digital technologies and apps to identify and address issues in their area.

The project ran from 2013-2016, working in four pilot cities: Bristol (UK), Zaragoza (Spain), Majadahonda (Spain) and Rovereto (Italy).

In the Bristol pilot, we worked with local people and organisations to identify data that was relevant to them and life in their city. This data was used to develop and trial a series of online services and applications that were functional, engaging, innovative and relevant.

By uncovering data that’s specific to Bristol – and the communities that live here – we aimed to work together to design digital solutions for local issues. During IES Cities we drew on what we’d learned from other data projects, such as 3e Houses.

Bristol Healthy Office

Healthy Office allows users to record and monitor their wellbeing indicators while at work.

Healthy Office was created through the collaborative EU project IES Cities and it enables people to record their mood and stress levels whilst at work.

The app was tested by organisations to monitor the working environment they provide and the mood of their staff. Correlations can be drawn between staff mood and environmental stress factors, showing organisations where they do well and what they need to improve in order to maintain good wellbeing at work.

Healthy Office was also used by individual employees to track their own mood and wellbeing at work. It can be used in a preventative way, to highlight potential stress factors and support staff to be proactive with managing their wellbeing.

Healthy Office is one of five apps developed for the city through the IES Cities project. IES Cities ran from 2013-2016, working in four cities in Italy, Spain and the UK to explore how people can use digital technologies and apps to identify and address issues in their area.

You Decide

You Decide was a free digital tool designed to enable people to have a say in the decisions that affect them.

People tested using the app to:

Share thoughts and preferences about neighbourhood decisions.
Set up their own polls and share ideas with others.
Give feedback to the Council and local organisations.

There were four main categories within the app:

Council Polls: share your views about issues that affect the whole of Bristol
Council Surveys: tell the Council what you think in their latest surveys
People’s Ideas: submit your own ideas for change and vote on suggestions put forward by others
Neighbourhood Choices: have your say in decisions affecting your community, from practical matters to funding decisions (you will only be able to do this for decisions affecting your Neighbourhood Partnership area)

Submissions made through the app were passed on to relevant decision-making bodies and considered alongside feedback obtained through other means (such as questionnaires and consultation events).

Democratree

Democratree explored new ways for people to get involved in tree-planting, using digital tools to suggest locations.

Bristol has a strong ‘green’ ethos and was recognised as the European Green Capital for 2015 – an award that no other UK city has won.

Democratree was created by a team of young people at Knowle West Media Centre during the Young Rewired State Festival of Code 2013, with the aim of making tree-planting more democratic in the city. It was then developed into a website and app through the European project IES Cities.

The app invited users to consider if there was somewhere in their neighbourhood that would benefit from the shade, shelter and beauty of a tree.  They could then propose a location for a new tree and vote on others’ suggestions.

Democratree is one of five apps developed for the city through the IES Cities project. IES Cities ran from 2013-2016, working in four cities in Italy, Spain and the UK to explore how people can use digital technologies and apps to identify and address issues in their area.

My Bristol: Inspiring others with what you do

A ‘local social network’ that enabled people to share images and inspiration with others in the city.

MyBristol is one of five apps developed for the city through the IES Cities project. IES Cities ran from 2013-2016, working in four cities in Italy, Spain and the UK to explore how people can use digital technologies and apps to identify and address issues in their area. MyBristol was trailed following the success of My Knowle West, our app for the Knowle West community.

Whether they were making, growing, working or playing, people tested out using the free online platform to network and raise awareness of the great things happening across the city during the 2015 Bristol Green Capital year.

My Knowle West

A local social network for the Knowle West community.

Research undertaken in 2012 with the RSA revealed that some people within our local area felt connected to their community and aware of what was happening, while others were isolated and didn’t know where to find local information.

Following conversations with local people, we worked with design company Design Militia and local community groups to create a ‘local social network’ to try and bridge some of these gaps.

In 2014 we tested My Knowle West – otherwise known as MyKW – an online space where you can easily share what you’re up to with an online network of other local people. Whatever your job, activity or hobby, you can share tips, photos and inspiration with others. You can also join groups and keep up to date with what like-minded people are creating.

MyKW was a widely-used platform for networking, celebrating local successes, and raising awareness of issues affecting the community – such as access to healthy food and education – and possible local solutions.  In November 2015 MyKW was nominated in the ‘Intelligent Communities’ category at the NextGen Awards 2015, which were held at the House of Lords.

Since 2014, we have offered 62 free training sessions for individuals, organisations, teachers, schoolchildren and community groups to help them use MyKW. In August 2015 there were 180 registered users, who have shared 840 photos and updates. Many local organisations incorporated the app into their work: for example, a youth charity used MyKW to chart its fundraising efforts while a cookery project advertised their summer classes for children and received lots of enquiries.

Like many social media channels, MyKW is an online community of like-minded individuals. But while traditional social networks may only link you to existing contacts, MyKW brought people together who might not usually know each other, in order to discover new things and with the shared aim of facilitating positive social action.

My Knowle West is one of five apps developed for the city through the IES Cities project. IES Cities ran from 2013-2016, working in four cities in Italy, Spain and the UK to explore how people can use digital technologies and apps to identify and address issues in their area.

Contact Us

Knowle West Media Centre
Leinster Avenue
Knowle West
Bristol
BS4 1NL
+44 (0) 117 903 0444
enquiries@kwmc.org.uk

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