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This year’s IoT Week has been complemented by a Public Expo that invited the citizens of Aarhus to join the conversation about the future of the Internet of Things (IoT)

2019.06.28 | Kata Börönte

Aarhus, Denmark

June in Aarhus. Unpredictable weather and kids playing with Lego. Nothing out of the ordinary, right? Except, this time, these kids have been building the future of IoT while IoT Week has taken over the attention of citizens for a full week in the second biggest city of Denmark and the home of many smart city initiatives.  

IoT Week is an annual conference, gathering industry and academia representatives from around the world, including the European Commission. The last edition has not only been special because it took place in Aarhus, but because the conference opened up to the citizens of the host city. For the first time ever, an open and public exhibition complemented the main event, showcasing the possibilities and the role of IoT technologies in the transformation of cities and communities, inviting the public, from kindergarten pupils, to senior citizens, to join the conversation and shape the future. 

In the spirit of co-creation and human-centric experience, the ambition has been simple, to present IoT in a very concrete and interactive way.

The future is digital. Ask the Children!

Ridehuset, a well-frequented location of the citizens of Aarhus, has given place to the IoT Week side event, the Public Expo. The expo invited school children of Aarhus to explore the possibilities and to give their own two cents when it comes to human-centric technology-based ideas, and they have not disappointed one bit. 

"I have created a building that saves energy. It has sensors outside, measuring the temperature, and then the device inside will automatically adjust to the ideal indoor temperature. (...) I got my ideas because I want all of us to pollute less and I think we should take better care of our planet.", said Rasmus, 11, Citizen of Aarhus.

All we have to do now is listen, which should be no hardship, as Rasmus has not been the only one with great ideas. More than 35 exhibitors, together with hundreds of visitors have proved that the possibilities are endless, inclusion and cooperation are key and the public drive must be supported by the industry.

See the full interview with Rasmus in Danish here and further media coverage of the Public Expo here.

The Team Behind the Public Expo

The IoT Week Public Expo was organised in collaboration with the Centre for Digital Transformation of Cities and Communities (DITCOM), Aarhus University, it-forum, Gehl Architects, Rambøll and Smart City Cluster Denmark. The masterplan was created by Eva Horáková, Planning and Design Lead and Visiting PhD Fellow at Aarhus University.

"It was a pleasure to support IoT Week that took place in Aarhus, my hometown, this year.", said Martin Brynskov, Associate Professor at Aarhus University and Coordinator of DITCOM, one of the main organisers. "I'm proud that this edition of IoT Week turned out to be the biggest yet and that we were able to invite citizens - from school children to senior citizens - to the IoT Week Public Expo to discover the Internet of Things and what it means for them."

To learn more about the Public Expo, visit our website here.

The Centre for Digital Transformation of Cities and Communities works with research and innovation projects and partnerships that address the digitalisation that is increasingly shaping our cities and communities. Located at Aarhus University's Faculty of Arts, the centre operates with a human-centric approach to digitalization and technology applications.

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