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About my project

My new project is called, Smarter Cities? Big Data, Ubiquitous Surveillance and Urban Management, and it’s funded by the Canada Social Sciences and Humanities Research Council (SSHRC) under their Digital Economy theme. It will be a critical five-year comparative study of ‘smart city’ (or ‘intelligent city’ or ‘ubiquitous city’ etc.) initiatives in three countries: Canada, the USA and the UK, and it covers three whole city schemes (one is each country) as well as other military, police and private commercial projects.

I am working with two of my favourite Surveillance Studies scholars on this: Professor Steve Graham from Newcastle University in the UK (author of Cities Under Siege and co-author of Splintering Urbanism) and Torin Monahan at the University of North Carolina in Chapel Hill, USA (author of Surveillance in the Time of Insecurity and co-author of SuperVision). The project will involve a team of graduate students, led by Michael Carter (Geography, Queen’s), and several MA students in Sociology and Geography here, and will also pull in a number of visiting students and postdoc researchers.

As is the case with these things, it’s already expanding with contacts in Spain / Catalunya (Barcelona), Japan (Yokohama) and Brazil (Rio de Janeiro), which remain potential right now, but I hope to be collaborating with a number of other academic and commercial researchers in the same are to share our work and have some major joint events.

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