Network of Excellence in Internet Science


Download the programme for the 2014 EINS Summer School, 13-20 July 2014.

Sunday, July 13

18.00 – 21.00: Guided tours in Volos: Interesting places, interesting paths

Monday, July 14 

09.30-10.00: Registration

10.00-10.30: Welcome note and introduction to the Summer School by the organisers

10.30-11.30: Introduction to the city of Volos (Vasilis Sgouris, ANEVO)

11.30-11.45: Coffee Break

11.45-12.45: A Mirror of the Human condition in Smart City (Karmen Guevarra, UCAM)

12.45-13.45: Snapshots on Research Challenges in control and optimization problems for smart cities (Iordanis Koutsopoulos, CERTH & AUEB)

13.45-14.45: Lunch break

14.45-16.15: Ideas for group projects (10min for each topic)

--Crowd sourcing (Daniele Quercia, Yahoo!) 

--Complementary currencies (Chris Cook, UCL; Giuseppe Littera, Sardex, Brett Scott) 

--Urban interaction design (Michael Smyth, Napier Univ.; Andreas Unteidig, UdK) 

--DIY networking (Mark Gaved, Open University, Harris Niavis, CERTH) 

16.15-18.00: More ideas for projects and group formation

18.30-20.00: Short introduction to capoeira for summer school participants and street performance

Tuesday, July 15

09.30-10.15: Presentation of projects by group representatives (5-10min each)

10:15-11:15: Urban*: Crowdsourcing for the good of the city (Daniele Quercia, Yahoo!)

11.15-11.30: Coffee Break

11.30-13.30: Big Data Analytics and Smarter City - designing smarter services with insightsBig Data Analytics and Smarter City Services (Sambit Sahu, IBM)

13.30-14.30: Lunch Break

14.30-17.00: Parallel Working Group Sessions 

18.30-23.00: Social Event at Rivera (swimming and dinner)

Wednesday, July 16 

09.30-10.30: Feedback from working groups (10-15 minutes for each project)

10.30-11.30: Pioneers, Subcultures and Cooperatives:different flavours of DIY networks and some of the challenges they face (Mark Gaved, Open University)

11.30-11.45: Coffee Break 

11.45-12.45: Life between Buildings - an everyday story of Urban Interaction Design (Michael Smyth, Napier University)

12.45-13.45: Transactive Energy in Prosumer Communities (George Koutitas, CERTH)

13.45-15.00: Lunch break

15.00-18.00: Parallel Working group sessions

Thursday, July 17

09.30-10.30: Feedback from working groups (10 minutes for each project)

10.30-11.30:  The Nature Of Emergent Societies on the Internet — Why It Is So Difficult to Generate Lasting Online Communities (Tamas David-Barrett, U Oxford)

11.30-11.45: Coffee Break

11.45-12.45: Volos 3.0 (Chris Cook, UCL)

12.45-13.45: Praxis over theory - how Sardex was built and how it evolves (Giuseppe Littera, SARDEX)

13.45-15.00: Lunch Break

15.00-18.00: Parallel Working group sessions

Friday, July 18

10.00-13.00: Presentation of final outcome to a panel including local authorities and faculty from the urban planning department

13.00-14.00: Lunch Break

14.00-16.00: Open discussion: lessons learned, future collaborations

17.00-23.00: Optional Session: Swimming, dinner by the sea, dancing :-)

Abstracts of lectures

A Mirror of the Human condition in Smart City (Karmen Guevarra, UCAM)

The future of the Smart City extends beyond technological efficiency to the people who live, work and create within them. People are the backbone of the Smart City.  The notion of ‘Smart People’ is synonymous with the Smart City. In reality, smart engaged citizens or digitzens will be a handful of the inhabitants of Smart Cities, with the vast majority being the ‘man or woman in the street’ living ordinary everyday lives.

In this lecture we look beneath the ‘smart’ to examine the psychological pivotal points around which humans organise their experiences in the world.  From this we can identify the core elements of identity formation and how it becomes the backdrop for trust and privacy. This dimension of the human condition is important for understanding the underlying processes influencing behaviours and behavioural change. This provides a framework within which to draw the tension points between people, culture, place and technology. The behavioural manifestation of these will shape the challenges of the Smart City.

A bottom up perspective frames the discussion in this lecture with a focus on the socio-cultural and psychological dimensions of human behaviour in urban contexts. The lecture material is drawn from cultural anthropology, sociology, social, behavioural and urban psychology.

Snapshots on Research Challenges in control and optimization problems for smart cities  (Iordanis Koutsopoulos, CERTH & AUEB)

We will discuss briefly some research problems we have been working on recently at  CERTH and Athens University of Economics and Business, that are  particularly relevant in the context of smart cities. The emphasis will be on sensor networks, participatory sensing and crowdsourcing, smart grid  optimization, data privacy, and the interplay of social and communication  networks.

Big Data Analytics and Smarter City Services  (Sambit Sahu, IBM)

In this talk, I shall cover two broad topics in the design of smarter city services leveraging big data analytics and the results are based on the pilots conducts across several cities. 

The first topic covers our work on smart meter analytics for both smart water and smart energy consumption meters. The idea is to provide insights to residents about their consumption behaviors and engage them effectively to drive sustainable behavior leading to reduced carbon foot print. I describe “activity based” disaggregation analytics that we propose and leverage to provide a wide range of meaningful actionable insights for consumers based on smart meter readings. I also describe some commercial opportunities in this space. 

The second topic is about sensing people movement from Telco cell phone data (CDR data) at city scale and leveraging this for transit optimization. I describe successful engagements with several cities including Istanbul, Dubuque, Singapore, Dubai where we derive origin-destination matrices from cell phone call detail records to understand how people move in a city and use that understanding to help city transit and urban planning authorities address a variety of challenging smarter city design problems. In addition, I shall describe a wide range of commercial and other smarter city services beside smarter transit services that benefit from our mobility analytics. 

Urban*: Crowdsourcing for the good of the city (Daniel Quercia, Yahoo!)

How can we change architecture to design more for the people and less for the architects? Daniel presents crowd-based solutions with which urban planners can get valuable information about what kind of urban design is attractive to the people. This leads to GPS systems that show you the "most beautiful" path to your destination and to indicators about the beauty of a city.

Volos 3.0 (Chris Cook, UCL)

Volos 1.0 existed for millennia in a decentralised but disconnected economy; Volos 2.0 is the victim of the centralised but connected economy which broke terminally in late 2008; Volos 3.0 will be a participant in a decentralised but connected economy.

There are three sources of 'value' in Volos. Firstly, its location, which is to say Volos purely as place/space; secondly the material and other resources embedded in (infrastructure, productive land, buildings) and passing through (eg solar energy & water) Volos; and finally, the largely unused intellectual/human resources - the people of Volos.

All of this economic value may be mobilised 'bottom up' through the use of associative agreements/protocols (social contracts) and the simple prepay credit instrument which long pre-dates modern finance. 

The outcome of mobilising these resources will be a networked Volos 3.0 and exemplars of networked local community peer to peer credit (not debt) clearing and peer to asset (asset-based) currencies.

Pioneers, Subcultures and Cooperatives:different flavours of DIY networks and some of the challenges they face (Mark Gaved, Open University)

In this talk I’ll introduce the “bottom up” approach to communities connecting themselves to each other and the internet: “Do-It-Yourself Networking”. Rather than funded by government or commercial bodies, local communities have been connecting themselves and their neighbourhoods with local networks (wired and wireless) using a range of technologies. They do this for different reasons: to increase community-wide communication, to get connected to the wider world, to support other activities or just for the fun of doing it. I’ll talk about some examples, and some of the technical and social challenges DIY networkers face. 

Life between Buildings - an everyday story of Urban Interaction Design  (Michael Smyth, Napier University)

This presentation will explore some of the challenges facing the emergent domain of Urban Interaction Design through the work of the UrbanIxD project.  

UrbanIxD is tasked with building a community of researchers and practitioners, and the project has as its focus, the point of interaction with and between humans in the technologically augmented urban space of the future. 

As part of this work the project ran a summer school in 2013 and this presentation will consider some of the research themes that emerged and their implications for continued research in the field.

Transactive Energy in Prosumer Communities (George Koutitas, CERTH)

The smart grid 1.0 and Smart grid 2.0 have developed the required infrastructure for command and data flow in the power grid network. The Smart Grid 3.0 is now delivering user centric services and business models. One of the most promising direction is the prosumer collaboration, where end users can collaborate and interact at will by exchanging energy or even their demand. In this discussion I would like to introduce the following topics:

Techniques to allow strategic collaboration between prosumers 

Demand Exchange and Energy Exchange in prosumer environments

Use of current digital currencies in the prosumer environment

Transformation of energy commodity to a currency  

The Nature Of Emergent Societies on the Internet — Why It Is So Difficult to Generate Lasting Online Communities (Tamas David-Barrett, University of Oxford)

One of the most important questions concerning the Internet has been whether it is going to alter our societies. In the first decade and a half of the history of the Internet it was a commonplace to say that online societies will be dramatically different to the off-line ones. However, with the rise of the social networking sites, the received wisdom had gone the opposite way: it seemed suddenly that the online social world is not that different from the off-line social existence of ours. In this talk, I will first present some evidence that will show that the latter statement is indeed true for dyadic human sociality. I will present the cases of laughter and friendship to prove this point. Second, the talk will show that while dyadic human contact is similar online to off-line, community structures tend to be dramatically different. Online communities tend to be fragile, and tend to last only until a single interest purpose is there for the community to exist for. This effect is very similar to the way preindustrial societies were transformed when fertility fell in the past two hundred years. A good example for the solution to this problem is the urban cul-de-sac neighbourhood, in which a high density social network can emerge autonomously. The talk will end with a discussion on whether the Internet can learn from urban planners, and whether this is the way forward to generate lasting, robust online communities.

Praxis over theory - how Sardex was built and how it evolves (Giuseppe Littera, SARDEX)

This talk is concerned with the correlation between monetary/community design principles and the resulting socio-economic interactions. In particular, I will present the creation and evolution of ( and the interactions among its participating members at a specific spatial and temporal context (Sardinia 2010-2014) and within the boundaries of a shared/specific institutional framework based on voluntary participation. I argue that no form of technology, including currency, credits, or money, is in itself neutral. In the case of, the implemented credit system has its distinct features which influence its function as both a monetary and a social environment. These features are built-in, so as to be consistent with the governance principles set through the agreement that all members sign when joining. Comparisons will be made between the Swiss WIR’s initial configuration and Sardex’s on-going development, which are strikingly similar in mission and vision but developed in different ways over time. The design of community currencies like is not a one-time opportunity (see also Bitcoin’s source code releases and frequent forks) but more of a process that never actually ends. Its focus is on enabling proximity-based trustful relations by choosing the right incentives and co-creating with the community a set of tools and services, through a continuous process of trial and error/learn-unlearn-relearn.