A catch-up with Tom Hunter (Innovation Consultant at the ODI) and Miranda Marcus (R&D manager at the ODI) with the material produced during the work week in Bristol.

Tom Hunter manages the development of the three mini-grants focused on France / UK collaborations.

Project shift and grant boundaries.

See our presentation here


The Open Data Institute manifested their interest in understanding the political aspect of the project.

Political sensitivities are also at the crux of the other projects being developed with the grants and understanding these could be very valuable material for the ODI going forward.

They mentioned that to take the project to the next step (testing a prototype) we would need to get buy-in from cities, which might represent a lot of work. — seems like it was difficult for Bristol.

For them, he most exciting part in the initial proposal was to highlight the pathways to resolution. A valuable output of our research could also be to map why we didn’t develop this axis in a report as this is a common misconception among leaders and coders and therefore a valuable thing to have evidenced.

(The challenge is every local government is going to have a different structure. This makes the project non-replicable.)

We mentioned we saw great value and innovation in citizen sensing approaches — in data literacy, understanding the implications, in activism goals and in the variety of data sources the council takes into account to inform policy making.

We chose to focus on how we could encourage and develop these initiatives, particularly around inequalities / quality of life / wellbeing in cities.

So how can we make citizen sensing helpful and present to civil servants? How can we help them see the value of this?

Examples of a City dashboard and the Airbnb experience map.

The ODI is particularly interested in the Bristol-Bordeaux twin city duo.

Suggested output for the project:

  • Rich ethnographic research
  • Prototype with user research
  • Reflective report with a clearly outlined research methodology.

They liked our open documentation and our project orientation.

Next steps:

Prototype and test / make links with different communities.

Pursue work in France, test in Bordeaux and see why there has been resistance to the project, or if there are other doors that could be opened?

Next catch up

Friday Feb. 9th 4-5pm.


End of Feb. End of March is the hard stop for everything.