Towards digitalisation of urban social sustainability
Licentiate thesis, 2022
This thesis aims to contribute to USS research and bridge the gap between theory and practice through digitalisation. It investigates USS in general and explores how it can be conceptualised and made operational to support architects and urban planners in their design process. The focus is on digital tools and how they can be integrated into the current architectural and urban design process.
Two studies are carried out (A and B). Based on systematic literature analysis, study A explores the theoretical background of USS. It investigates the reasons for the lack of consensus on USS's conceptualisation and how digital tools can be developed around these issues. Study B explores the development of an indicator to support practitioners in evaluating the ability of residents to achieve their daily needs and uses interviews with practitioners for feedback on the indicator and how it can be improved.
The findings indicate that USS is a complex and often "fuzzy" topic. There are many definitions for USS but little consensus among them. By viewing USS as an empty signifier, stakeholders can collaboratively decide what social themes are important to them. Two categories of social themes are identified - social equity and social capital.
Focusing on social and spatial equity, a USS indicator called Trip Completion Rate is developed and used to explore the ability of residents to fulfil their daily needs through examples. The interviews with practitioners suggest that an indicator for evaluating social issues is appreciated, but further development is required in communicating complex results to stakeholders.
In conclusion, the findings of this thesis contribute to a better understanding of USS and how to operationalise it for architects and urban planners through indicators. To further advance the integration of USS into the design process of neighbourhoods, digital tools must focus on enhancing social equity in the built environment. Finally, it identifies the indicators, methods and future pathways to advance the design of socially sustainable neighbourhoods through digitalisation.
Chalmers, Architecture and Civil Engineering, Building Technology
Towards digitalisation of socially sustainable neighbourhood design
Local Environment,; Vol. 26(2021)p. 770-789
A user interaction model for digital tools to support socially sustainable neighbourhood planning
Other conference contribution
Using trip completion rates to evaluate urban social sustainability
Other Computer and Information Science
Social Sciences Interdisciplinary
Areas of Advance
Building Futures (2010-2018)
Lic / Architecture and Civil Engineering / Chalmers University of Technology: 2022:4
Opponent: Prof. Dr. George Vrachliotis, Theory of Architecture and Digital Culture, Faculty of Architecture and the Built Environment TU Delft, The Netherlands