Rapid urbanisation and aging of our building stock put serious strains on the quality of life in cities, as well as the management of big infrastructure systems. The smart city paradigm promises to combat these challenges, but its often ignoring a fundamental fact: our cities are old. Smart Retro approach is a novel way of developing cities, as it seeks ways for integrating smart solutions into existing building stock. This text is the first part of Smart Talk series, where world leading experts comment the most burning issues concerning the future of our urban life. […]
Outi Kuittinen, Head of Co-Creation
Outi Kuittinen is a political scientist specialising in co-creation, democracy and sustainable business. Outi has been part of taking Demos Helsinki from an organisation of a few employees to a prominent international change maker. Outi came to Demos Helsinki from London where she worked at Demos UK and at the Finnish Institute, researching social entrepreneurship, urban economy and privacy.
Outi leads the development of inspiring and productive co-creation processes. Her responsibilities have also included organisational culture and HR in the executive board of Demos Helsinki and she has served as vice chair of Demos. At the moment she is a Visiting Fulbright Scholar at the Harvard University and the New School.
Outi’s first project at Demos Helsinki was studying changing attitudes of Finns towards climate change issue and the ways in which these attitudes can be channelled into action. She continued putting these ideas into practice in Peloton, which propels organisations and individuals towards the development of services, products and business strategies that support sustainable lifestyles.
Outi’s strengths lie in the development of multistakeholder co-creation concepts, as well as the planning and carrying-out of long-term innovation and learning processes. She has entrepreneurship community and functions for the University of Helsinki, designed major Finnish Challenge competitions for several organisations, developed SPREAD iFuture citizens’ forums and led them in three different European countries and on the internet and taken Demos Helsinki's Koulu School peer-learning concept to USA and Nepal, to be used in humanitarian work and development co-operation.
Outi is an in-demand speaker, on subjects ranging from old age to democracy and crowdsourcing. She has taught sustainable city planning at Aalto University and is a member of Finland’s ministry-level climate communication steering group, as well as the Ministry of Social Affairs and Health’s Sustainably Aging Finland working group and Sitra’s New Democracy forum.
She has been British Council's Climate Ambassador, and a member in Sitra's New Democracy forum, in the Steering Committee for Climate Communications at the Ministry of the Environment of Finland and in the Working committee for Sustainably Ageing Finland at the Ministry of Health and Welfare.
In her free time Outi has taken part in launching of Dodo’s urban farming activities and sat on the NGO’s board.
Outi is one of the four authors of Kausiruokaa, a seasonal cookbook for lovers of good food and the climate.
For the past half-century, the central functions of our cities – housing, mobility, work and commerce – have remained more or less unchanged. Technical improvements have been incremental, business models have not diversified. Market structures are in many cases still very similar to how they were fifty years ago. It appears, however, that we are about to witness remarkable changes in the way we live, move, work and shop in cities. Did you know sensors will soon contact everything that surrounds us to the Internet? These sensors can be located, […]
There are established policies, practices and market structures that on the one hand make our urban planning machine automatic, but, on the other hand, make it resistant to change, even when change is strongly needed. So why do our cities change so slowly? 1 THE URBAN ENVIRONMENT IS DEVELOPED BY A CLOSED CIRCLE OF ACTORS, AND ITS DEVELOPMENT IS GUIDED BY CERTAIN CULTURAL AND LEGAL PREMISES. Examples of these premises include an imperative to fulfill the basic needs of the inhabitants, in particular to build enough housing for people to […]
Cities are not like they used to be. Cities all over the world are repurposing themselves and building new narratives of their future success. While the rest of society defines progress in increasingly economic terms, cities have started thinking more about their population and their capacity to create a flourishing environment. The structure of cities has changed. The 20th century city was dominated by big industrial structures and functional planning that separated production, housing and services into distinct zones. Now the new normal of cities and urban change perceives people, their skills, […]
Cities now account for 70% of the world’s CO2 emissions. From Oslo to Copenhagen to Växjö, cities both large and small have realised that where states have failed on an international level, cities can still succeed on a local one. Cities have shown the will to take the lead, and in doing so, seem to have realised something vital: if cities are where emissions occur then they are also where emissions can be curbed. Although the targets and measures of cities are local, they are a catalyst for a transformation that […]
I think this is the key way to go…..rather than thinking of Songdo as the model. – Saskia Sassen, professor, Columbia University, on “Nordic Cities Beyond Digital Disruption” Many urban areas – both buildings, services and urban activity – are dilapidating. Smart urban services provide new jobs and make cities more livable. The strongest urban vitality comes from the engagement of locals, the existence of good services and fit infrastructure. ”Nordic Cities Beyond Digital Disruption” publication introduces a new way to develop vibrant and smart cities. Join the launch lunch on 6th November […]
Last years have marked the emergence of new smart urban services such as car sharing, smart homes, pop-up diners, electric bicycles and many forms of collaborative consumption. Meanwhile, many – even central – neighbourhoods in European towns and cities are facing severe decline. Lack of investments, eroding infrastructure and e-commerce have lead to demise of traditional retail and local services. Oslo is not an exception. The capital of one of the richest countries in the world has a number of central neighbourhoods that have been in state of decline for […]
Nearly 20 super interesting teams were chosen to Peloton Smart Retro Acceleration Program from over 60 applications. The teams of the Program provide a great variety services that are needed to make cities smarter and more attractive from smart energy & mobility solutions to place-making concepts and new ways of retail. Read about the teams & their solutions. Peloton Smart Retro Acceleration Program is for startups and entrepreneurs with a smart product or a service for urban dwellers. It offers a highway access to mentors, user communities and spaces in urban test bed areas. The program is […]