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all ILS gGmbH ILS Research gGmbH
Urban digital production - Interaction forms for the adaptive production systems of the digital economy in agglomerations
Client:Ministry of Innovation, Science and Research of the State of North Rhine-Westphalia
Partner(s):UMSICHT - Fraunhofer UMSICHT e.V., Oberhausen; Wissenschaftsforum Ruhr e.V.; GIMT - Grönemeyer Institute of Microtherapy, Bochum; RWI - Leibniz Institute for Economic Research, Essen
Time frame:05/2016 – 10/2017

Digitization permeates and changes all areas of life and economic activity, such as value-added processes, consumer behavior as well as social and cultural interactions. Especially in urban centers with further growing population densities, the increasingly diverse needs of the population and companies can be served by digital production close to the consumers. At the same time, complex changes in living and working environments can be observed in these areas. The formerly clear spatial and temporal separation of work, residential and recreational places is increasingly dissipating in times of digital work. This future urban production will be characterized as knowledge-based, digitized and often decentralized.

Considering these developments, the cities and regions of North Rhine-Westphalia are faced with major challenges: they have to accompany the digital change and reconcile it with the requirements of the population and the environment. To achieve this, new holistic concepts have to be developed in the fields of (digital) life, economic activity and working. It has to be questioned how the digitization of the value-added processes (e.g. Industry 4.0) affects the people’s everyday life. What are the consequences for urban and district development? How can the development of a new urban production be assessed with regard to the goal of sustainable land development?

The aim of this pre-project is the development of a research agenda as the basis for establishing a long-term active, interdisciplinary platform, which identifies and analyzes the challenges of the digital economy and develops and tests approaches for the improvement of the economy of North Rhine-Westphalia. The various aspects of change, the different disciplinary perspectives and competences as well as the reflection with practice partners are to be integrated into the research. For this purpose, scenarios of change have to be designed, which are developed into research projects, in the main project. In addition, first demonstration projects for this second phase of the project have to be defined.

In the main project, appropriate frame conditions will be formulated and the necessary technical, infrastructural and social innovations will be initiated. Key questions of future urban production have to be tackled and answered interdisciplinary and transdisciplinary. In this context, the Ruhr area can serve as a possible laboratory area where technologies and products for future markets will be developed and manufactured, which can also be used for the Ruhr area itself.

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