The future of our cities - Smart Cities between data extractivism and remunicipalisation
Hello. Everybody, good evening welcome. Here. At the. Luxembourg. Lecture. The presentation. Of the study. Very, happy to welcome you here at the circular, house. Berlin. Berlin based Centre for circular, economy practices. My. Name is Katalin gamebook. Member. Of the parliamentary. Group of the linka in the. Berlin Parliament, and, responsible. For, city. Development, and tourism. And, smart, city, so. Today I would do I would do the moderation, and. We. Are here to listen to a lecture, about. The new, study of the rosa luxemburg, foundation. The. Future. Of our cities, is the. Title, of the evening. It's. My pleasure to. Welcome you all, of. You there, are many many people here and. As. Well the. Today's speakers, you've. Gained emo Xhosa molzof, sorry. And. Andrei. Hollen who will do the. Comment. On the lecture and as, well as kibriya. If. Guinea molzof. Is one of the most, prominent, critics of, digital. Capitalism. And author. Of several books, he. Writes for, various, newspapers. Amongst. Others the New York, Times The. Economist, The Guardian and. Frankfurter. Allgemeine zeitung. Not. Anymore he tells me now ok. He. Is preoccupied, with, questions. Of how, major technologies. Companies. And are. Transforming. Society. And democracy. And. Rehome. Is a. Well-known. Leftist. City. Researcher. And, teaches. At Humboldt University in, Berlin. He. Is a well-known left activist, as well. Working. In the field of general, gentrification. Studies. Housing. Policy and, Urban. Development, he, also works, as. An. Advisor, for, the parliamentary group, of de linka in the. Berlin Parliament. Before. We listen to the lecture, of yogini. And the comment of andre and as well, part. Of the lecture of, yeah. Yeah I will do the introduction, don't, worry. By. Andrey I want, to mention that this lecture today is the first presentation, of the study rethinking. Smart. City how to democratize. Urban, infrastructure's. Conscious. Kibriya, now, that's the part, who. Is also here, is the. Digital, innovation. Officer, at the, city government, of Barcelona. She, and Jenny. Moore also did. The study, together. The. Study was financed. And commissioned. By the Rosa Luxemburg, chieftain and for, those who. Don't know the, orthodox book for her system. It. Is important. To say that it is associated. To, the, Left Party delink and works on. Social. And analyzes. And political, education. Let. Me know, just, add some personal. Words. I'm. Very. Happy that we are here today, and, able. To discuss, alternative. Visions, of, the. Future of our cities, in the era of digital capitalism. And, the. Era of the digital the so-called digital. Revolution. Three. Years ago we. Had the first event, together, with the rosa luxemburg, foundation about. Left critiques, of, the. Smart city paradigm, and. Only. A few people were there maybe. Not. Not, even 100. Last. Year I had the big honor to meet Francesca, Barea at. A, panel, about smart, smart. Cities. And. She. Said look. It's. Good that you have a very theoretical, point of view on, your critiques about what smart city is about and why it is so bad and capitalistic, and whatever but. Look. Around in Berlin there are so many activists. Come. Together with them and. Just. Organize, yourself, and find. A practical initiative. To. Confront, the, smart. City paradigm. So. Here we are and. Yeah. Now let's just listen to the lecture and then afterwards. We have one hour to debate. Not. Maybe not everybody, of us. But, we will find a solution to make. A lot of you come. To. Have a word in the discussion, so, if. You need the floor is yours. No thank you very much and. Thank. You very much also for, introducing. Me how. Correctly. Usually. I'm introduced completely, wrong so yeah, usually, when I do events that are not organized, by the lingo by Rosa Luxemburg Stefan I'm introduced, as a critic. Of technology, here. I got introduced, as a critic of digital. Capitalism, which, I think gets us very close to, how I think of myself but. I would like to disabuse, us of any. Idea. Of any notion that, somehow, there, is a separate, thing out there called digital capitalism. Driven, by its own dynamics, and driven by its own logic that lies outside of. The. Capitalist, system as such, which. I think is a very important, point to make and I'm not just joking here, I'm trying to Nick Pitt on a tiny point because.
What I would like to argue. And leave, you with tonight is, that, much. Of what we hear about smartness. Digitality. And. So forth. It. Does presume, that somehow, we have, broken, away from all, of the other dynamics. That have, driven life, in the urban environment up, till now and up till now of course that dynamic, has primarily been financial. Has been driven by the interests, of real estate has, been driven by interest of developers, by investment, management houses. As it managers and so forth right I would like to argue that even though that. Logic, increasingly, manifests, itself through digital. Technologies, that, extractivist, and that accumulation, smart. Technologists and we'll talk about all of them later. Tonight primarily. The actors, that shape the, development of cities have not changed so much there, are new intermediaries, but I wouldn't necessarily discount. And. Somehow, downgrade. They're. All that we have traditionally, attributed to, the real. Estate industry or, to the finance industry in the determining, will happens in our cities and the alliance, between the financial, part and the digital part is much stronger that many of us three recognize right, so let's not just think about the digital outside. Of the financial, so, point number one but. To. Return, to the study which i think is a study that all you should download and read and there are cope available they in German and as far as I know there'll also be copies. Soon not now but soon available, in English online. And, I, don't know if they'll be available on paper but nonetheless. The report itself, consists. Of two. Parts, one. Is more, of a theoretical. Analytical. Part, that tries to situate, the. Emergence, of this interest. In smartness, in, series in, the dynamics, of contemporary, capitalism with. The focus on neoliberalism. Financialization. And many of the other dynamics, that you're all familiar with and. The second part is, much, more pragmatic and. Looks upon and considers, what it is that can be done what, are some of the forms of interventions, that can happen what.
Role Can be played by social. Movements that have traditionally resisted. Many of the dynamics, that we. Are describing and. Also what are some of the interventions in terms of public policies, at, the level of the city that. Can be implemented, you. Could probably guess that. Francesca, contributed, much more to the second part I contributed, much more to the first part so, I will will probably, split, somewhat. The task tonight I. Would. Focus, on the. Kind. Of macro level, picture as I see, it of how the trends that we now see in series when. It comes to digital technology, relate. To some broader dynamics, of the capitalist, system and. I'll try not to make it too boring and. Then Francesca, will of course give you the real world perspective of, what, can actually be done about, them so the task is really not. Very ambitious for her no. I'm joking I'll also try to explain, what it is that we can do but I'm sure she'll give you much more concrete. Information. To, chew upon so. One. Of the main. Departing. Points if you will and one of the main assumptions, that. Drive. This study and the, approach that we take in this study is that we, should not get particularly, hanged, up and particularly, picky. About. This term smart right. So. It. Is true that, it's a term that has emerged as, a. Term that many technology. Firms and consulting. Firms have, found very convenient roughly. A decade ago to pitch their services to the industry, that. Generated, a lot of critiques, from, people. Who clearly saw through, a lot of the marketing pressures of those firms up. To a point where now a decade. Into it I can easily imagine a future where. That. Term will just drop out of circulation and. We will not have brochures. Dedicated, to the smart city and we will not have conferences. Dedicated, to the smart city while, the reality, and many, of the initiatives that we started, under that, cover. If we will will continue right. So I think we, should not. Necessarily. Draw. Very, clear, demarcation marks, and points. And boundaries about what counts as a smart syria or smart city initiatives, and what doesn't we'd, rather look at. More. Or less functional. Level what. It is that this smartness, behind, many of these initiatives and projects, what. Does it actually imply, right, and what it is that the people pitching, this proposal solutions. And, initiatives. What. Do they want to accomplish, right. So. This is one part and the other part of course is to ask what. Is it that, drives, those. Initiatives right why do city. Managers, see the administrators. People. Making, many of these deals with technology companies why, do they find these proposals, appealing, why. Do they find them somehow. Feeding, into the broader agenda whether. The agenda, is of enforcing, austerity, measures with, its agenda. Of democratizing, participation. Or something else entirely the. Dynamics, that we are likely to uncover will, be dynamics, that cannot. Be easily brought. Back to a single logic, so, what I would like to argue here is that this. Push toward smartness itself, it's. Driven by logics, that, have. To be unpicked I almost. Sector, by sector and, feature by feature and, I know that this sounds very abstract and I'll try to make it more concrete as we speak but I think it's very important, to understand that there is no one. Self. Propelling logic. Of smartness that requires series to do certain things know they picked up by. City managers, and administrators who. Have particularly. Needs some. Of those needs might have to do with building.
More Energy-efficient, systems some. Of them might have to do with balancing, their budgets some, of them might have to do with presenting, themselves as, being. In the oven guard of creating. Highly, competitive, urban. Economists, that investors, would appreciate and, so first right, so those motivations. And rationales, have very different in many, different cases even though very. Often they're lumped, under. This label, smart. And I will get, back to that on. Some more detail. To. Give you an example of how the, latest. And future generation, of projects. That interact, with technologists and data in the urban setting would, not even be using this terminology it's. Enough to look at what a company like Google has been doing in this space so. This if you have been watching this for quite some time would, know that roughly. Three years ago Google, formed, a unit called, sidewalk, labs where. They put. A very prominent. Executive. Daniel, dr. of who had, a career on Wall Street before, and private equity but, then went to work for Michael Bloomberg they. Put it as vice. Mayor for. Economic. Development. They, put Daniel Doctoroff, in charge of sidewalk, labs and the goal, of sidewalk labs actually is. To, fix. Series, to, solve cities solve, problems, that exist in cities even though they wouldn't have in mind saying that the goal is perfect cities and. That means in practice, that it's, all about finding ways to apply many. Of Google's technologies. From, self-driving. Cars. To. Automated. Parking systems, to. Ways. In which you. Can offer, all. Sorts of public services, to optimize, energy use to, heat, up as they proposed a lot of the recent, submissions. To the city of Toronto to propose, even heating, pavements, so, that you can melt snow while. People get to work on their bicycles, right there are, a lot of things that. Google, is capable. Of doing leveraging. The. Great ecosystem. To, use their world of sensors, and data gathering devices, that they have assembled so far right, they specifically. Do, not use the term the smart city or smart in describing, any of the initiatives, right, nonetheless, as. You. Would see if you examine there are many page hundred. Pages of, proposal. That they submitted to the city of Toronto to build an entire, part. And in that district, of the city from scratch and they won that proposal, by the way a couple of months ago you. Would see that they, have an ambitious vision where, they will actually be, the key intermediary, to, the provision, of many services, that. Will be offered, by the city itself, well, it will be offered, by the city of course will be offered by Google so it would offer it in the city to put it more exactly but, it will be more or less overtaken.
By This. Company all. Right so again. I think the. The. Message that I keep on insisting is that we, should not draw. This, explicit. Demarcating, lines right we have to be looking at what technology companies. And other companies are, doing with technology and, data in cities right. Some. Of that would fit under the Smart City rubric. Some of that would not right. And I think if we were to, analytically. Split. Everything. That's happening in series with regards to technology in beta and, with regards to this kind of smartness, imperative. Or rationale into, three broad categories. We. Can roughly say that the, rationales, are three. Of, three kinds right. It's. In, one way to. Promote. Automation. To. Promote your application, if you will I know explain what it is and to promote allocation, right so this panoply. This, network, of digital devices sensors. And. Networks. It. Serves, to. Kind. Of work on these three dimensions. Right so it seeks to automate. Better and here you can think about artificial, intelligence which. Is what essentially drives self-driving. Penetrating. Almost every facet of society, from. Transportation to, energy. Use to, public health to many. Other domains right so the goal is not, just to automate, by. Injecting. Some kind of artificial intelligence into, every service but, it's also clearly, to make, services. Cheaper and, that's essentially, the rationale, that. Google. Uses, when, they pitch their services. To, a lot of city administrators, the idea is that many, of the services that previously were inefficient, and ineffective can. Now be offered cheaper, if only, you let Google in and help you optimize your traffic, flows by analyzing. How, all the cars are navigating the city or, if you will just let the men in order to take. Over the provision, of you, know public transportation. System, or to build the last mile of the public transportation system, to give you another example in the, United States where, many, local. Governments. And local municipalities, find. Themselves, under, heavy, budgetary, constraints, because of austerity, and many. Similar factories many. Of them actually opted to. Offer a subsidy, to Ober so. That the, rights of, their own citizens, in that particular town that particular. Municipality. Actually, cheaper instead. Of building their, own transportation. System, as you actually already have towns, in New Jersey towns, and Florida. Which, instead, of building, or investing, and maintaining, their. Own system, of buses or trains actually. Offering subsidies to Ober so that uber services, become 20. 30 or 50 percent cheaper to the end-users and, so and they might become even cheaper, to some extent if Google if uber in this case manages. To completely. Automate the system and, move, to an. The idea of taxes, or transportation. Services, being, completely automated, and being self-driving so to say right which again you can see the rationale there that you can actually leverage, many, of this technology store made many of the services and as the automate, you essentially managed to do, more with laughs. And we all know why there is less there is less because we, are being told that because of austerity agenda there is far less money to go around so, you have to find a way to end to. Sort. Of to go, on with, limited resources and this is where technology and the rhetoric of smartness and digital, comes in very handy right, it makes it very easy to justify many of these interventions because, a lot of public officials find, themselves under, quite a lot of pressure on the one hand to, continue. Presenting themselves as extremely. Competitive. As compared, to other cities as compared, to all the other projects. And municipal. Initiatives. That are now undertaking all, of the digital technologies, and on the other hand they.
Need To do all of that with far less resources, right so and then this. Interjection. Of digital technologies, to some extent is meant, to facilitate that, it's, meant to have. Them save, their face to, some extent in that they can present that, they are working with big capital. With big technology, firms many of them foreign they. Are managing, to offer many of the same services, they offered before and they managed to do it cheaper and even better because all of that is digital and all that cost last of course much. Of that is untrue in, that. Many. Of those technologies, do not deliver they do not deliver the savings, they end up subscribing, meaning of those municipalities to, contracts, then that end. Up with municipalities, paying, far more than, they previously expected, but then the last that's the pitch so that was first. Pillar so to say automation, and reputation systems, and and and the idea to leverage, this, kind of infrastructure. Of smartness for. A reputation systems, I think it's also very important, to grasp in that, it's. Primarily a. New, mechanism, of how. A society, and. The city, if you will that. Moves away from. Laws. And, regulations. When, it comes for example to zoning, regulations. Can. Shift to systems. That are driven almost, entirely by feedback and, collection. Of information a modification, of behavior, on behalf of users and whoever. Happens, to be using the platform in the case of. Google's, many proposals, to see this through, sidewalk lapse you can actually see that logic at work but, I would argue you can also see that work in many other parts of what we consider to be this new urban, digital economy, whether it's Airbnb, or uber where, everybody. On the platform has a reputation of, some, kind that reputation is always in. Flux it's, always being updated based, on your interactions with other parts of the system and that in itself comes. To play the. Role of law, and of rules and regulations, that I'm the previous, moral actual, regulations, used to play so, you know taxi drivers were obligated to do and not to do certain things through. Law and. Uber speech was that now we can move away from that and we can actually just have passengers ranking, the drivers and that, in itself will take care of making.
Sure That they stick to the rules right, you now can blow that logic, to, a much broader scale and what, we would see it as Google's proposals, to see this is that, they actually explicitly arguing, that we, need to move away from. Zoning. Requirements. And, many, other pesky, regulations, that, the nonsense, make, it much harder for capital, to circulate, and for. New buildings to pop up whatever investors. Want them to pop up to, a system, where by. Collecting, information and, by, having and letting, everybody rank, everybody, else we, can have a much more fluid dynamic, system where, instead, of having regulations. Prohibiting, in. A loud music being. Played at 11 o'clock in a particular, part of the neighborhood you, will actually remove, all those throws altogether, and you will have people providing, feedback on whether the actually okay with that or not so, and then if you can match it of course with a nice bit, coin operated auction, system you, can have perhaps people, bidding on whether they would like, how. Much they would like to pay to tolerate, that noise playing. In that neighborhood, all right so I mean you can see how the logic, of dynamic. Pricing which, you already see at operation, in many of these platforms you know search pricing, and uber for example, where whenever, there is a natural disaster prices. Automatically, go up because, that's the way to put more demand. Most, apply on, the road you can see that this. Feedback. Driven, system, tied to a reputation, of participants. On the platform, it, works at economy at large of course not just at the urban level but in the urban level it takes a particular, importance, because they often it is in fact tied to, things like zoning regulations, right, and of course this attack, on the regulations, and requirements and, restrictions load can be done with urban space that, has also been of, course the favorite line of attack for the real estate industry, and for, the developers, who, of course have, always looked down upon any limitations. On what it is that they can do with space because. You know they would always argue that that actually imposes. Restrictions on how much houses we can build and so forth and you can see why Google, for example itself, would, insist on such clauses in, the, city. Quarters, it pitches to cities like Toronto because. Google itself will not actually be paying for, much of that infrastructure, that they are promising to build their, project. Essentially, is a partnership with. Big, financial. Players, you know big real estate guys who. They are still to find, who. Will then come in and contribute the capital, to, actually build this fantastic. Series that Google is promising, to operate we will of course operate, them right, and they will run the data infrastructures. And they will run a lot of other things but the actual capital intensive. Parts of the system, buildings. Roads, infrastructures. All of that will be funded by someone else and that someone else of course will be none other than a bunch of asset managers, in, your pension funds and whoever else has money to spare and pour into, capital intensive projects, in cities right, so again we are coming back to this. Kind. Of merger between, the financial capitalism, on the one hand and the digital one on the other the, third pillar in addition to this automation, and reputation one, that I've described is what I'd call allocation, right, and there of course the idea is that by, leveraging all, the data and all the information, and all the feedback, that comes, from. Platforms. Uber, Airbnb our. Phones and, so forth social, networks it, becomes possible to find new, ways to allocate, these horses that might be scarce or might. Just be offered that prices that are too rigid and too sticky so, you can think of ways of course in which Airbnb. Has managed, to, dramatically. Increase the allocation. Of houses, to some extent with all sorts of negative and positive consequences. For some, to. The same extent uber has managed to do the same thing with transportation. And you can see this logic of allocation, where you, managed to integrate more and more suppliers. Of, things, but also more and more people demanding, things through, digital technology you. Can see that logic at play in many of the platforms, that are now kind, of invading, if you will our. Cities and I think this idea that you, can through, digital technology you. Can essentially, find, ways to, use. Existing. Resources. More. Efficiently which. Of course lies at, the heart of capitalist, logic as well which. Is all about increasing, your capacity utilization, I, mean this is why we like to have three shifts that are Factory and not one because, you don't want to have a factory. Capacity. Standing. Island I don't write essentially, now we've blown that logic, to the rest of society because, now it's possible to increase capacity utilization, and, virtually everything right.
And That of course can be done by reallocating those, resources, to, multiple users dynamically. In almost in real time precisely. By the fact that everything, is integrated into one big giant digital market, where everything is interconnected and, everything has a reputation of some kind so you can build markets almost instantaneously. That. Of course is the logic, that is at work in society. At large but. It's also at work in cities right because cities have become, very. Important, parts to a, project that I described. And we describe it in the study like this the project of data extractivism, and, I think this logic. Of that extractivism. Is something that we, are only now beginning to grasp, and understand, because. Ultimately I would argue that this is one of the key. Poorly. Understood and, mostly, invisible processes. That, currently operate in society at large and the, idea is that you. Have. Four. Or five big, giant. Most American, companies with four or five competitors of similar size in China more. Or less spirit against each other in. A quest to. Gather and extract, as much data from society as possible, in order then to use and convert that beta into. Advanced. And quite, sophisticated, products. Of artificial intelligence. Which. Then of course allows them to build services, on top of that as you can see in the, case of Google self-driving cars, as, you can see in the case of many healthcare, systems, that they're also building, was the help of artificial intelligence I mean the idea is that once you have AI, you. Can build very profitable, services on top of it and you have four or five firms Amazon, Google Microsoft, you. Know in a couple of others that are heavily moving into the space and as part of this broader logic, of that extractivism. Of course they need to find ways to extract as much data as they can and. As part of that data, extractivist. Logical. Paradigm, if you will they find ways in. Order, to. Expand. Father and father into our everyday life because, by expanding, father and father in our everyday life they can actually extract more and more data that which explains, to you why Google, would like to run everything about what you do from your car to your bath to your kitchen, to.
Your Stomach, they, would like you to swallow, pills because that way you will be able to monitor what's, happening and, collect data and doesn't allow you to avoid, cancer what, not right, the idea is that precisely. That by expanding, the, domination, if you will or the presence of those platforms and their technologies, in our life they'd be able to extract more and more and better and better data which, would not just be used to increase the, efficiency and effectiveness of, advertising which. Is something that we understand by now really, well but, also to increase and improve the efficiency of the kind of AI products, that they build that. Is also more accounts, for many. Of the heavily subsidized, services, that. This firms have been offering to us for. The past 10 or 15 years right where, we have not been paying almost anything, to be using Google services, to be using. Facebook. Services, to some extent you've not been paying. The exact, price to Ober for, some of different reason so in, the study who actually described, this following Colin. Crouch as privatized, Keynesianism, and there is an entirely theoretical discussion. Which. You know you can follow in. The study but also outside. Of the study on what privatize Keynes in is mints but there is that. You. Know up until 2005. 2006. It, was mostly private that and private credit that, allowed us at. Least those of us in Western, Europe. And North America to. Keep, on having decent, living standards that, people. Counted, upon and delight upon when, the economy, was stable and we still had actual. Keynes in his main place up, until nineteen seventies right as that system started, unraveling, what. We have seen was. Precisely, the turn to that and they turn to credit, so, that people can actually borrow to finance, some. Of the, drops. In the living standards, right and of course all sorts of rationales. Were, added on top of that we, started investing into houses, as a way to supplement our, income, housing. Became, one. Of the main sources of welfare. Insecurity for people it was pitched so by, many parties, of the new labor for example in the UK there was one of their primary actual. Policies, when it comes to welfare it was to convince everybody that we should all own our houses and then, hope, that their prices will go up and then sell them so that's. A point that we understand very well the point we make in this study is that you. Can actually think, of our, increasing, reliance and dependence, on digital technologies, from uber to Airbnb, to Google, to Facebook and many others along, similar lines in. That in, heavily. Reducing. The cost of social, reproduction if, you will they. Have, allowed, us to. I've. Compensated. Right, for, quite a lot of loss. In, our ability, to pay for their services right so if you actually would start factoring in video cost of using Google and the real cost of using Facebook or the real cost of using many of those platforms you will end up with people who will just not be able to afford using them right, so in some sense advertising. And this, that extractivist, logic has paid for, the many of the services but, at the same time you. Can also see that platforms. Like uber and airbnb that are present, in our series have played a similar role right, in that they have allowed us at, least they how, they presented themselves, has to. Tap, into additional, sources of income either, by putting those houses, that have we have bought, being. Encouraged, by you, know the transformation. In the welfare. Policy to put it into constant circulation, and global market through Airbnb or to, become essentially. Highly. Casualized, precarious, labor in the case of drivers who drive for uber right, so we got access to accessible jobs, but, we also got access to making. Better use of our existing resources, there, of course then triggers all sorts, of negative, consequences, for the cities that we live in and you might, have noticed it in Berlin but, we. Also live in Barcelona we also notice it in Barcelona we're. Clearly. Trying. To save one part of the population, who owns houses, has, proved somewhat problematic for, those who do not own houses and have seen their rents go up as, all of those houses are put into circulation for, tourists visiting the city right, so analyzing, a, lot, of the developments, of additional economies, through that lands of private as Keynesianism, I think can be very useful and that's what we do in in, the study so I would encourage you to just go and look at it in detail one. Last thing to say here is that and. Now pass on to Francesca, to ground, you in and. Somewhat more optimistic, I hope a view, of what's happening is. That it's. Very, easy to fall into the trap which. Is set up increasingly, by big institutions like the World Bank, or many consulting, firms like Deloitte or McKinsey, that, somehow series.
And Mayor's around the world right. And we should just make. Sure that all the problems have haggled at the level of the city in reality of course syriza very often are in the hands of McKinsey and Deloitte and it's damp around the city so, they're more than happy to say that mayor's around the world because they're the ones who run the mayors, so. If that's the. Good-good. There. Are exceptions but. The. General reality, is, quite sad so what-what, I wanted to say was was not to peak on anybody in particular, water water says that we have to understand, that yes the most immediate. Way. For us to act of course is at the level of the city right, and it might be very. Tempting. For us to get our hands dirty and start building pools, in start, building and experimenting, with initiatives and all of that I encourage that and that should be done but, if you take, the logic and. Of course at present you only tiny bits of this analysis, that we do in this study but if you take the logic of it to, its ultimate conclusion you. Will clearly see that there, are some structural constraints. At the level not just of the nation-state that. We have seen at the global level that. Have forced this logic, of digital, Keynesianism, or privatized Keynesianism, if you will and, this turn towards, the smartness, in all of its three components, of automation, reputation, and allocation, on us right, and in order to reverse. Those trends in. Order to do something we also need interventions, at the national level at the global level which, take the question, of dominance. And confessional intelligence, seriously. Which take the question of data ownership, seriously. Which take the question of what. Kind of industrial, future. On post and our solution would like to have and the, new Troughton series trainer we cannot just expect, as. Many of these institutions, like the World Bank and others encourages, that ultimately, series. Will sort it out if, only we put more kind. Of greener. Sustainable. Or in. A cooperative technologists, at people's use and disposal like the right of derives of a company like Google is, the. Consequence, of many. Many years of funding, by you know US defense and US trade policy and so forth we cannot reverse those trends by. Clever urban policy it does not mean that there are no things we can do at urban level and Francesca I'm sure will give you a very good analysis what ought to be done but we should not leave this urban, fight only. To the cities right. Even. Though there are a lot of things that cities can do right, and this is where we, always. Have to keep balancing, this national, global and the urban scales because, otherwise we'll just fighting, fights, which, cannot be won by series and series will be the ones who'll be blamed for it if they really take up this fight without, building. Waste, kind of branch out of the just urban studies Thanks. I'm. Jessica, maybe. I, make. You try, to build a bridge so, what is the difference from, a left-wing. Government, in Barcelona, what is is. There the possibility to, make a difference, in this word of. Really. Dark. Digital. Capitalism. Thank. You so first, let me say I have the easy, task, to prevent everybody. Here to go and commit massive. Suicide yes, so, it's very, easy I think, after. This kind, of uplifting. View. Of the dystopic. Reality. That we're gonna have to live in in predatory. Platfrom. Capitalism. I. Have the task to say that actually you, know it's all about our collective, power and that it's up to us to, actually, see. What can be done and, I, really believe, that there is that kind of space and a kind of opportunity, and let. Me say that I totally agree with the last remark that Evgeny made which.
Is About, cities. Cannot do it alone and one. City of course cannot do it alone but also let's Don give, all the responsibility. To see this because nation-states, are retreating, from. There, I, mean. From providing. Some kind of future vision to, people, and also because political, and financial institutions, are, crashing, and they do not represent anymore, a possibility. Or a future, I mean a future world that we want to live in so. I totally agree but. I do think that there is this space of building it from the bottom, up where, that cities, really. Represent, and that an, alliance of, cities. Popular. Movements. Social. Movements, political, movements, that include political parties, and, progressive. States are. Needed. In order to figure out what, we need to do and how to build it together so. That's. Why you know in my, job which I'm the chief technology, and digital, innovation, officer of Barcelona, I do also, a lot of aminos, because you know I. Like. To escape a little bit from the Catalonian situation. Sometime and look at the world and make you know alliances. But I go around and talk to a lot of my colleagues in cities and also beyond cities, and and. Really debate these kind of issues with, with with with a with. The proposition of, why. Don't we built a different, agenda and I, think here I mean of course there is the wake-up call that I, think a technology, agenda. Shouldn't. Be a technocratic, agenda, so this is the first I think big point that. It was very clear in what afghani says and is a wake-up, call for our policymakers, and our politicians, that, always leave technology. Either to the technologies, or to the technocrats, and actually. Present the smart city which is one of the buzz words but anyway one of the big agenda that we that are there on the table as it, is for the fourth Industrial, Revolution artificial. Intelligence, the Internet, of Things the, smart city I mean all this technological program, as a technocratic. Program, and usually. The technocratic, program, is about let's, leave. It to the big tech firms or or, or the big consultancy, firms and so on and they will tell us you know what ought to be done and this. Was the case I think for this most city program, and this was very much I mean gone through. A technology push vendor, led agenda, where the big technology firms I mean as Afghani said mainly, a big, gigantic, US, firms because, Europe kind of lost a little bit I mean a Germany we'd never had but anyway lost some, kind of leadership in, this space. Let's. Leave them to, propose the program and so, this happens so you know technology came first and basically. I think what is really missing and where I want to start from is actually, the question of popular sovereignty so, the question, of how do instead.
Of Building. Predatory. A digital, capitalistic, vision, we can create, a, digital sovereign, cities, where, the space for popular sovereignty which, actually means the. Democracy. I mean participate, read amok see and the ability of people to be part of this of, shaping, the future of their cities is the very core of what we are doing so, this is actually, why I was nominated, by the mayor of Adak allow the mayor of Barcelona, to. Be in. Charge of the digital technology policy. Of the city and she, gave me this very concrete brief that was how do we design technology. That really served the people so, how do we move away from the technology agenda, which is about you know hyper financialization. Uber, ization and, you know privatized, public. Space into. A I, mean thinking about the governance of the technology, the ownership of data the, governance of digital. Infrastructure, and digital, services that, really serve the needs of people so, when I started, you know my work in Barcelona it was very pragmatic, on this point of you know trying, to, align. It with the, priorities, of the cities which is the, political, agenda for, instance Barcelona, had some, very clear tasks, in our city. Government, that is affordable, housing how do we make right. To, housing a core. Of our political, platform, our mayor come from the, interior, movement. So she's an housing activist and so she made housing, for everybody, a big, priority for our government then, we have the question of energy sovereignty. And how, we can shift as much as possible to, renewable, energy production, and how cities, can reminisce. Applies part of the energy infrastructure, and energy production and Barcelona. Is creating, a energy. Municipal, operator, and also, this actually, goes very much aligned, with the Smart City agenda, because smart. City is about, you know energy. Logistics. And digital infrastructure, coming, together in the provision of urban services, and then, of course the question of sustainability, in, general which, is really important, about you know reclaiming public, space and make public services, more sustainable. And so, on and then, digital, democracy, or participatory, democracy that, is really one of the things that we're trying to do, when. We formulate, policies, that I think goes at the core of what we are trying to we, should debate which is I, mean. Much less about technology, and much more about how do we reshape. I mean reframe this relationship. Between public, institution. And government, and people, so, what are our public institution. Design form you know I don't know how many how much involvement, the crowd, here has with the city policy, I mean the city of bollène how much you are involved, into helping, them shaping, the I mean policies, in general not only digital policies. And. You know how we can, redefine. This, relationship. With. Yeah. Between citizens. And public institutions, so being inside, you know I mean actually, in the in the Korean government in Barcelona many, of us are not professional.
Politicians We are citizens, we are in these institutions, trying to change these institutions, we come from from, the outside, I mean many many people there from citizen. Movements, and some, of us just being, you. Know like, doing our profession, and being inside in this these institutions, now and try to change things and we really realize that part I mean big problem, is actually the public I mean how the public, is shaped today that, doesn't serve at all the needs of the, citizens, I mean, procedures, are very bureaucratic they're. Very opaque it's, very hard to know how resources, are allocated where. Priorities, goes how institutions, spend, the, people's money, which. Is something really important, and then you know it's very hard to get involved, so usually, these kind of lobby, groups that allocate power, resources. And decides, the priorities, of the cities are very, far removed from what are their real needs of communities, so, I think we shape in that kind of relationship and, really, rich framing this agenda as, people. Let is the. First thing and it's super important, I think, the other big question is. How. Do we set the direction of this technological revolution and, I think yes I mean let's forget now issue if you should only be done. From a city perspective or state or global, perspective. I think a bit a big a big question is, do, we want to, go, on in a way where the technological, revolution and, I mean honestly, we are seeing a huge transformation I mean I I really, believe that the. Fourth Industrial, Revolution I mean if you couple arty, official intelligence, and the potential, of it I mean with the big firms I mean maybe two or three on the planet, that are investing, 15 billion. U.s.. Dollars, per year in R&D. Which is mainly AI infrastructure. Coupled. With the possibility, of automating, manufacturing. And automating, production, and then outsourcing. Production, again, you know I. Mean. In in East Asia and and. Basically, redefining, the supply chain if. You look at that I mean. Some economists say this is, the first Industrial Revolution that, will destroy, more jobs than it creates I, mean we talk about 100, million jobs, that will be destroyed, in in, sector of the economy that are really key to employment, creation, you know like logistics. Like transports. And and like manufacturing. So. If we look at the magnitude, of this and also I mean if we look at unemployment statistics, in. In, Europe for instance and, southern Europe where you have unemployment youth, unemployment, around 40, 50 percent I mean you see how much this agenda really requires, a political. A, political. Vision. I mean. How. Are we directing. These this. Technological revolution for, what I mean and not only to produce what but like how how, are we defining the future of work you, know how how, old is increase in productivity, that will be created, for from by the first Industrial, Revolution how, it will be distributed are, we gonna invest it in a fund you know that will provide basic income to people or are we creating decent, jobs you know for the future so, these are how we refine, our social, provision, systems, and so on so these are all like big questions, and I think of course I mean we need a political agenda to, to address that and then, you know what something, that we suggest in the study is also the question of technological.
Sovereignity, Which. Of course is not just the question of who controls the technology, stacks I mean of course the Chinese afghani said it is if today you don't control I, mean, even if you don't control microchips. I mean at this point you really have to control the entire I, think. Technological. Infrastructure, from, the cloud today. To. The servers. Where the data is located I mean we see that Europe. Has lost complete, control of data in this, economy and so the majority of the data flies, outside. In the in the u.s. mainly, and you. Need to control the hardware you need to control the I. Mean. The mobile phones we lost completely control. But, mostly, it's not only about software, hardware and, the technology, side or the infrastructure, side but is the political, of course the political and economic sovereignty. And, I. Mean to be pragmatic. Here. At the city level yes that we are doing something that is setting, a democratic. Ethical, standards, for the open. Digitalization. That's how we call it where. For instance in the City Hall we are introducing. Clauses in the big contracts, that we're doing with technology, providers. Where, we mandate for the use of open standards we, mandate for the use of open source software interoperability. Data. Sovereignty which, is basically all the time that the cities procure big services, who control, the data and the information so, this is a very important, part of how the, city does. Procurement, and and spend, citizen, money and basically, we are introducing, closes that not only are about, environmental. Sustainability gender. Equality and, labor, standards but, also technological. Sovereignty, because it's very important, that they. Know how and the ability to control data and Technology space in the public and citizens. And this is like, a very big point for me are the ones that should control the data so, the data should not belong, I mean they should not be owned by corporations, or by government, it should be owned by us by, the citizens, that produce this data and this, should be recognized, in the way that we do business in, the way that we do big contracts, and in the way that we develop, technologies, and I. Mean this is the data sovereignty, that should be part not only of a an ethical, and responsible data, strategy but, also should. Be part of the way you know we develop services and technology, and then of course say, that encryption, is a human right and so, it should not just be an option, you, know encryption, should should, be there for everybody for, the people and we should design, systems that have privacy, and security by design and, make, this actual, gdpr which is the Data Protection Directive. Of. Europe, a big opportunity, for us I mean we cannot compete, in. The digital economy on, the basis, of what the US government, says or what Google, says which is basically surveillance capitalism. We, should build an alternative and this alternative, should be about citizen. Rights data sovereignty see our decentralized. Architecture privacy. Enhancing technologies and. Make Europe, the heaven, of that I mean we have a lot of talent, maybe Berlin, is the capital, where you know we have a lot of hackers that, have built a movement, telling. Us that this is the kind of technology that we need why, don't we make this technology the. Technology. That. Citizens, can use in the city and we, invest public money to develop this technology and that we call all the. Startups. And small. Companies and, talent that we have in the city to, help cities build this kind of infrastructures. So, I think this can be done and it can be done at a city level yes. I mean we are not and no and also this implies a new, social pact on data a new, social pact on data means that we also want, to have. Collective. Rights over, data which, is citizen, rights over data which I think are fundamental rights. In, a digital society, so it's not all about infrastructure, gadget, tools and technology, is really about this kind of social. Fact that, we have to build because this is, underlying. Our you, know rights as citizens in a digital society, and so. Yes we, are not going to be able to invest, all these billions, of euros, that are invested by Amazon, and all these hedge, funds, that we described in the in the in the studyin that afghani was talking about and it's, very hard to arrive, at that kind of level of capital but, yes that we are investing, a lot of money in research and development I mean at least in Europe and yes that we have a lot of public funding, that, can be diverted, into this program and I think we have to start from building an alliance with, cities.
Movements. Political, parties. And government, they want to do this and that it can done by repurposing. And refocused, a lot of the public investment, into this kind of technologies, so. Yeah, just to to. Finalize I think also in the second part of the of this study and it is something I think it will be nice to discuss, tonight there. Is a lot that is happening, you know on like alternatives. You know platform, cooperatives. Are there, cryptocurrencies. Now, I mean not they are not only used for speculation. I mean, in the financial, system but they also used to rethink about alternative. Economic systems, locally, I mean, in Barcelona we have a project that combines, cryptocurrency, with, the basic income for, people that need it and we are piloting, that we. Are building decentralized. Data architectures, to give ownership, back to citizens. Of their data, the. Risk projects, that are creating, alternative. Economies, that are based on this kind of new models so, there is a lot happening and so what we are also putting out there is okay based, on what is happening and a collective, will that we have let's, move, forward to be to build these alternatives. And. Lee from. Hell. To heaven, what. Is to have what has to be done in Berlin. Yeah. This is a good question don't and, feel. Uncomfortable to, to speak after such great, presentations. And, powerful. Speeches and but I have. Some notes and I read. It first, of all I'd like to sing to the Luxembourg. Foundation, for organizing, this event and, also this study and. For. Inviting give, Guinea and Francesca, to Berlin and I think. It is a very good idea to start. Discussion. About a global problem in, an international, network and, then physicists amazing, partners, at, second I like to think of Guinea and then Francesca. And for, their work and you have to read the study it's, it's it's an amazing. Knowledge. In. In, the study and a lot of good ideas and, and. Especially. I like. That, you attempt to translate the critical. Debates. On technology, and the right to the city discourse, and and most, of you knows, that I never, researched, on new technologies. And and I'm using. Internet, but but never think. About it more. Or less so I'm an urban, researchers, and and, I know smart, city discourses, and from, my, comrades. In, the Planning associations. And and so so but, at. First I have to say that that I'm agree, with most parts of the analyzes em of, smart city policies, and Smart City concept smart. Cities became, and this is visible, after reading, your study. A slogan and, an instrument, to promote neoliberal, urban policies, and, one. Of the central messages, of your study so, that smart, city is less a question of how to use technologies. Or how, to use, you. Have new technologies. But much more the question of. The political and economic consequences, of this, new technologies. And and at. Least you. Presented. It today. As well and that. New technologies. And. Starting. A fundamental. Restructuring of, our cities, itself, and, Afghani. And Francesca, highlighting, the, complementary. And, between austerity, neoliberalism. And, smart cities and they're, demonstrating that, new technologies, cannot be seen as a resource or. Helpful tool, to solve, current problems, in our city so that is what I. Learned. From from, the study and it's, more an. End, mode of, changing, social, relations, and political power structures, in our cities and societies, and smart. Technologies. Are, introduced. Are not introduced, and for, for. People's benefit, in cities at all and then smart, cities much more an. Attempt. Especially, the, discussion. Of. City. Governments, in smart city networks, yeah this discussions. And are. Much more attempt, to make cities, ready, for the new technologies, yeah it's it's not so that that we have an adaption, of. Technologies. For our needs and cities it's much more of my feeling, that we changed, the cities that say are. Ready for for the new technologies, that will fit much, better into. The new technologies. Ticket digital, industries, knowledge-based. Production, as a web-based services, became. As, well a growing segment of capitalist, accumulation.
During. The last years Google Amazon Apple IBM, and one of the most powerful. Companies. In the world today and. Therefore. It, is not a surprise that they have an interest to reconstruct. Our cities. Into, or, as, infrastructures. And consumer, space of their. Economic. Activities at, least, and it's not the first time that was. My. Thinking. About this fellow. Mean that, urban, and regional planning, strategies, we're, subordinated. Under the requirements. Of a basic technology and. The urbanization. In, the, railways in the area of early, industrialization, achieves. A need of heavy, and steel industry, and based, on the steam engine, technology, the, suburbanization, and. Highway construction in. The last century, and, followed. The needs of the automobile. Industry, and and at least, that it's the same. Construction. Between basic, technologies. And, and then cities. And of course each era. Are different. From from the era, before cities. Are not only providing spatial. Conditions, and physical infrastructure, for a particular. Mode of production but, furthermore as the best social, structure, for accumulation, this is what we learned from the past and, mass. Worker societies. Including, the army of unsecured workers in the time of in this polarization, as well, as a nuclear, families, and the suburban. Cities. And during. The forest mode of production, I could, understand, as a necessary source, of structure, for social composition for each mode, of Okuma d accumulation. And this. Is an approach of the, regulatory. Co the regulations. The. Regulation. School yeah. This. Is what I mean post Mac system. Regulation. School and. This. Is series complemented. To analyzes of capitalist, accumulation and. By. Analysis of the dominant, way of regulating societies. And, example. Of the forest mass production. Redistribution. In the context of Keynesian, welfare, policies. And nuclear families, and sub urban settlements. Is one, of the best examples, for this triangle between accumulation. Regulation. Social, structure, based on.
Basic. Technology. And this. Was my way to interpret. The. New situation was a discussion, and about, smart. Cities and the coincidence of, digitalization. On neoliberal, is a ssin individualization. You, pointed, out in your study is giving, a clue for the regulatory. Triangle. Of the 21st. Century maybe the, digital, infrastructure, gentrified. Cities with, high-skilled. Individualized. And flexible, workers. Are, becoming the Spade Hill and social conditions, for. A new mode of accumulation, and smart city policies, in this terms could be seen as a forerunner of having, coming, modes of regulation, so. This was what, what I learned from from, the study and and, especially. In the history of capitalist. Organization. The. Last hundred fifty, years are showing that new technologies, are not established, to solve problems, and cities but, that, policies, are intended, to adapt cities, to new technologies, and new modes of accumulation, and David, Harvey I'm a, critical, geographer, from the US pointed. Out at urban and regional structures. And the. Social relation, in the cities itself, as a basic, infrastructure, for capitalist a communal, accumulation. And therefore. We should not only discussed. About the infrastructure, of, the. World, wide net, and the technological, side of infrastructures, but but especially, our M social. Relations, in the city I became a part, of this new. You. Have precondition. For M. Capitalist. Accommodation. And the arrow it should be a common point to interpret, digital, technologies. And especially, smart. City policies, at first, as an attack on cities. As we know them and, we. Should discuss, this this attack and, under. Or. In in. Two direction, it's also attacking, parts. Of society we don't like but but. We learn and in. In in many conflicts, in Berlin is said that new technologies. And especially smart, city policies. Are. In. Force a lot, of problems, we still, have in in, in, in Berlin and based on this consideration. We, have to analyze the main actors biases. Attack and we have, to find our to will benefit from this changes, and who will be losing something, and, at. Least every, economic. Change and also every change of technological. Para digne, will, be also an kind of social redistribution, in, it and give. Guinea and Francesca, a highlighting, some of the companies, are benefiting, from the, digital change of. Production, communication. And the, one hand or providers, or most providers of digital infrastructure. On the other hand providers, of new services, so like uber as a land or Airbnb and. Overall.
There's. A benefit, for financial, institutions, as what if Gainey pointed, out in its speech and enabling. New infrastructures. And new services and the, digital economy seems. Deeply, embedded into, the financial. Financialization. Of investment, so, in this past also new for me as an only. Con, cement of, digital. Technologies. And but. In terms of urban development we. Have to consider that both parts, of visible, changes. Are the most visible changes, in our city's, digitalization. Of work and everyday, life as well as the gentrification of neighborhoods, are based, on global financial investments. And, in. Case of, the new locations, of global players like Google or Amazon and, in. Cities like Berlin or in the affect of the tourist apartment, subletting business. Organized. By platforms, like Airbnb we, are confronted, with the first examples. Of visible. Relations, between new technologies, and urban respecting. At. Least and in the case of solando strategy, here in berlin to operate as a landlord. In free design to provide their, international. Status in a city accommodation. Or. The case of the growing real estate investment, of the. Sambhar, processors. Ceos, from from. Rocket internet are showing, them the interconnection. Between digital. Businesses, and real estate speculation, and quite, directly, and. Over. All these activities are, this. Context. Of. Financialization. And. Then the economy of economy, of financialization, the. Majority. Of people living in cities like Berlin or Barcelona, maybe is. Not, benefiting, from these economic, activities. The. Most as or the majority of them of course we have some benefitting. By all this. Airbnb, businesses. Or as, a. Former. Shared economy, activities. And identification, became, an urban mainstream, in the last 10 years and most tenants have to pay higher rents and before and, it. Is, likely that smart, city projects in Berlin will boosts. A trend of gentrification, though. This is the experience, of all, the still I know and Google activities, and how its back or. The. Amazon. Location. And. Bocoe. Know. My first proposal is. To. Combine critical. Analyzes, of digital, technologies, and gentrification so, that is of. Course, a result if you invite, me to one, of these discussion, and in the housing questions will be one of the strongest challenges, for the future and we should not disconnected. From discussion, about digital. Technologies, and but. Even the aspect, of progressive, version on new, technologies, should be related to the urban questions, and in francesca still, presented. How they done. It in in in in, barcelona, and many, social urban, movements, in the past as well as in the present age postulates. Us right to the city as a slogan and as a demand at least and this right to the city has to, translate into the 21st. Century and. In. And also into, the conditions, of financial. Mode of accumulation, and new, technologies, and the basic idea of this right to the city is going, back to Henry, Lee favours work in the 1960s. And and some of you, are familiar this is M series, and. The. Favorite he finds the right to the city in the, 1960s. As a right to centrality, and resources. Second. As a right to recognition of, differences, and to. A right to appropriate, of, urban. Surpluses, extracted. By collective, activities, in the cities and and, if you read this. Early. Discussion. On right to the city then, then we realized. That this, is this. Is our. That. Is also a need to to reformulate, this, this claims and this demands into notes, hang the new conflicts, and into new situations in the city and give Janey and Francesca. Proposed and their paper a right to the digital city and. Francesca. Pointed, out and that, they are claiming a lot of democratic, and common alternatives. To organize and to use digital. Technologies. Open-source, grassroot. Based infrastructures. Cooperative. Modes of service. Provision open knowledge open data and so on and the, paper demonstrate, a wide range, of possible, and realistic, alternatives, to deal with new, technologies. And if you want you find. All elements. Of the right, to the city in in, Lefevre sense, in. In this approach and then for, example open source and sharing infrastructure. Could, be seen as a right to sensuality, and right, to resources, or digital. Democracy. And diversity, of infrastructure, and providers. Could be seen as a right to, recognition, of difference, or open. Data open knowledge could be a part of the rights to appropriate.
The Surplus, of knowledge, page base production. So bad and at, least by readings as the. Strategies, in Barcelona. Especially, um I, feel, that there's a limitation, to the, technological. Technical. Side of the urban changes, and the vision of digital comments, and shared. Resources that. Democracy. Are more, or less opportunity. Directed. And, digitally. Skilled activists, yeah and also here in Berlin um my. Experience, is wherever you visit a mall this urban. Hackerspaces or a bar camp of critical. Developers, or meeting of critical internet activists, you will meet highly-skilled, crowd, maybe like, like here in the room of. Many young men less, woman and with, their own professional, roots in the digital. Economies, so and in terms of, technological. Changes. Of protection, it means that most activists, of digital. Comments, and right potential. Beneficiaries, of, the new technologies, and and, we should. And. Maybe. Hypothesis. So-so. And, one, way to escape from this elitist. Trap M, of, anti smart City and digital activism. Could, be to reinforce, the connection to, other social movements and, like, the housing movement and what. We need is in, in, my terms the kind of de gentrification, of, hackerspace and. Technological. Discussions. And the, digitalization. Of anti gentrification protests. And such. Kind of connection, could be a precondition. Not only to understand, so smart city policies, as an attack on our city is bad as well, to assemble a new generation, of grassroot protest, civic organization. For right to the city and if. Capitalist. Accumulation in, the 51st. Century needs. Digital, infrastructure, smart, city policies, and gentrification. To. Be successful, we should refuse, all of them. Now. And if capital's, capitalist. Logic means, that. The cities should be reconstructed. To become ready for, the current mode of accommodation. And the basic technology we, should try to reverse, the, relation. Between cities, technologies, and accumulation, cities. Should be not longer a tool for accumulation, and new infrastructure, but, we should use the potential, of digital technology. Technologies. To empower people in, history. City where a shelter. For people and a common place for people's, activities, and we should be claimed cities was its function. And I think that that the. Way in. Which, the activists. Changing, Barcelona, and, by governing, the cities and in, the last two. Years around, this. Is a good example and, that this is possible, to to reclaim cities function for people's activities, and especially, under the conditions, of a globalized, economy and, exploita