Advertisement

Digital Infomediaries and Civic Hacking in Emerging Urban Data Initiatives

  • Piyushimita (Vonu) ThakuriahEmail author
  • Lise Dirks
  • Yaye Mallon Keita
Chapter
Part of the Springer Geography book series (SPRINGERGEOGR)

Abstract

This paper assesses non-traditional urban digital infomediaries who are pushing the agenda of urban Big Data and Open Data. Our analysis identified a mix of private, public, non-profit and informal infomediaries, ranging from very large organizations to independent developers. Using a mixed-methods approach, we identified four major groups of organizations within this dynamic and diverse sector: general-purpose ICT providers, urban information service providers, open and civic data infomediaries, and independent and open source developers. A total of nine types of organizations are identified within these four groups.

We align these nine organizational types along five dimensions that account for their mission and major interests, products and services, as well activities they undertake: techno-managerial, scientific, business and commercial, urban engagement, and openness and transparency. We discuss urban ICT entrepreneurs, and the role of informal networks involving independent developers, data scientists and civic hackers in a domain that historically involved professionals in the urban planning and public management domains.

Additionally, we examine convergence in the sector by analyzing overlaps in their activities, as determined by a text mining exercise of organizational webpages. We also consider increasing similarities in products and services offered by the infomediaries, while highlighting ideological tensions that might arise given the overall complexity of the sector, and differences in the backgrounds and end-goals of the participants involved. There is much room for creation of knowledge and value networks in the urban data sector and for improved cross-fertilization among bodies of knowledge.

Keywords

Digital infomediaries Civic hacking Urban Big Data Open data Text mining 

References

  1. Batty M (2013) Big data: big issues. Geographical magazine of the royal geographical society. p 75Google Scholar
  2. Beyer MA, Laney D (2012) The importance of ‘Big Data’: a definition. GartnerGoogle Scholar
  3. Ferraro R, Aktihanoglu M (2011) Location-aware applications. Manning, GreenwichGoogle Scholar
  4. Gil-Garca JR, Pardo TA (2005) E-government success factors: mapping practical tools to theoretical foundations. Gov Inf Q 22:187–216CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  5. Lam W (2005) Barriers to e-government integration. J Enterp Inf Manag 18:511–530CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  6. Patil DJ, Hammerbacker J (n.d.) Building data science teams. http://radar.oreilly.com/2011/09/building-data-science-teams.html#what-makes-data-scientist. Accessed 1 Aug 2014
  7. Provost F, Fawcett T (2013) Data science for business: what you need to know about data mining and data. O’Reilly Media, SebastopolGoogle Scholar
  8. Rosenberg N (1963) Technological change in the machine tool industry, 1840–1910. J Econ Hist 23(4):414–443CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  9. Stieglitz N (2003) Digital dynamics and types of industry convergence: the evolution of the handheld computers market. In: Christensen JF, Maskell P (eds) The industrial dynamics of the new digital economy. Edward Elgar, Cheltenham, pp 179–208Google Scholar
  10. Thakuriah P, Geers DG (2013) Transportation and information: trends in technology and policy. Springer, New York. ISBN 9781461471288CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  11. Thorhildur J, Avital M, Bjørn-Andersen N (2013) The generative mechanisms of open Government data. In: ECIS 2013 Proceedings. Paper 179Google Scholar
  12. Xing X, Ye L-K (2011) Measuring convergence of China’s ICT industry: an input–output analysis. Telecommun Policy 35(4):301–313CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  13. Zheng Y (2011) Location-based social networks: users. In: Zheng Y, Zhou X (eds) Computing with spatial trajectories. Springer, New York, pp 243–276CrossRefGoogle Scholar

Copyright information

© Springer International Publishing Switzerland 2017

Authors and Affiliations

  • Piyushimita (Vonu) Thakuriah
    • 1
    Email author
  • Lise Dirks
    • 2
  • Yaye Mallon Keita
    • 3
  1. 1.Urban Studies and Urban Big Data CentreUniversity of GlasgowGlasgowUK
  2. 2.Urban Transportation Center, University of Illinois at ChicagoChicagoUSA
  3. 3.Department of Urban Planning and PolicyUniversity of Illinois at ChicagoChicagoUSA

Personalised recommendations