Introduction

Smart cities are ones that deploy innovative technology, create more innovative ways of delivering public services and make better use of data with the ultimate objective of becoming more prosperous, sustainable and a better place to live. Per a research report released by the European Parliament in January 2014, 51% of Europe’s 468 cities with a population over 100,000 are smart cities. This number is expected to grow as more and more cities are announcing and piloting smart city initiatives.

Smart environments are usually build on a network of sensors and Internet of Things (IoT) sensing devices to enable real-time monitoring and response. Data collected from the IoT network can be processed both in real-time and posteriori to provide insights for advancing and automating processes within and for the urban city environment. A large variety of sensing devices already exist and provide the ability to collect a wide range of city data, from environmental conditions (temperature, air pollution etc.), traffic and road congestions (both for vehicles and humans), sound monitoring, waste management and much more. Current urban city monitoring systems manage to understand changes in the city environment and provide automated mitigation solutions that improve the city management strategy and ease citizens’ life within the city.

In a parallel and disconnected path, research initiatives utilize information posted in social media to identify and contextualize events (either social or infrastructure related). This area of research is based on humans as sensors and utilizes the power of the crowd to provide citizens, government officials, journalists and other interested parties with city-wide situation awareness. In the rest of this document we shall refer to these as “Human Sensors”, denoting all forms of human activity, events and observations; analyzed and aggregated from Social Networking environments.

 

Feed2IoT Core Objective

Feed2IoT’ aims to research the “Technical Sensor” and “Human Sensor” environments and identify points of association between these two currently disconnected worlds. These points of association will aggregate the information coming from the two environments, in what we call the ‘Feedback Loop’, that will allow the enhancement of the insights the two approaches can offer. ‘Feed2IoT’ will utilize the ‘Feedback Loop’ to add context to the two environments that would not have been possible to detect or measure in their isolated states, thus substantially enhancing the analytical capabilities of each domain. As a result, both the quality of life of citizens and the business environment in any Smart Environment is significantly enhanced.

A real potential of the two approaches lies in their bridging integration through the creation of the feedback loop. Such a feedback loop will aggregate the information from both approaches and result in actionable insights originating from the city habitats and visitors through their actions around the smart environment and the context therein. Feed2IoT brings together a private Research and Development company, namely CyRIC, and a well-established center of excellence for risk and decision science of a private university, namely CERIDES of the European University Cyprus.

Figure below visualizes our concept regarding the Feed2IoT project, including research and development activities, technical outcomes and target audiences. As per our vision, Feed2IoT can complement and advance the existing CyRIC IoT cloud and smart city infrastructure. Three IoT gateways are planned to be installed through the project that will enable complete coverage of the Engomi Business Region (shown in the map). The three gateways will be installed on the CyRIC headquarter, covering the south-west area, at the European University Cyprus, covering the east area, and at CyRIC’s business incubator center (Gravity) covering the south-center area. Figure below shows how using as an example the Engomi Municipality Business district city infrastructure to be deployed by the project.

  

Main objectives

The project aims for the creation of internationally acclaimed novel knowledge in an emerging multidisciplinary field, i.e. the smart city environments, combining Information and Communication Technologies (ICT) and Social Sciences and enabling crowdsourced innovation and city governance.

Advance the synergies between a private research company, CyRIC, and an acknowledged private education institution, the European University Cyprus. Through this collaboration, we foresee the involvement of students to high quality innovative applied research that is expected to results into
actual products.

The project results will be exploited by the Host Organization CyRIC Ltd, local authorities, service providers and a wide range of citizen-oriented SMEs for the improvement of the quality of life of citizens, providing them with new advanced services towards a better living environment, enhanced information and assisting them in completing their everyday tasks with less effort. This will result in improved client services and reduce situation resolution time around the city.

Enable the nation- and global-wide Dissemination and Exploitation of the Feed2IoT Smart Environment services paradigm and its applications in different use cases and scenarios. CyRIC as the Cyprus Business Innovation Center (BIC) certified by the European Business network (EBN) with its first ICT Venture Building Incubator will be able to exploit in the future the results of this project through Open calls for Startups to join in with Smart City applications.

The Feed2IoT project objectives are in full compliance with the Excellence Hubs Programme Call under the 2nd Pillar “Sustainable RTDI System”. The project targets Cyprus Smart Specialization Areas under the Sustainable Urban Development theme and the sub-category Urban Network, Infrastructures and Connectivity.

Work packages

In order to achieve the objectives, the FLOBOT work plan is divided into 8 work packages (WPs), each targeting different objectives, tasks and expected results.

WP1: Project Management

WP2: Dissemination Activities

WP3: Analysis, Comparison and Evaluation of Smart Environment Services Initiatives

WP4: Human and Technical sensor Pilot Infrastructures Deployment

WP5: Analysis and Implications of the Human-Technical sensor feedback loop

WP6: Feed2IoT Service and Pilot Applications