Centre of Expertise Governance of Urban Transitions

Research group Civic Technology

Civic Technology empowers people in their role of citizen. Civic Tech can be used, on the one hand, by government to give citizens an active role in governing and designing society, e.g., in participation project or with Smart City technology. On the other hand, citizens themselves can take initiatives in engaging with the community they live in, e.g., using community platforms or with Citizen Science technology.
The research group on Civic Technology develops knowledge on designing and applying interactive technology that constructively contributes to society, in areas such as democracy, citizen participation, smart city development, community-building, and social media.


Follow our activities on https://civictechnology.nl
About the research group

The research domain of the group includes Smart City, but focuses on Smart Citizen solutions that empower people in their role of citizen.
In a functional society, individual thinking and acting must relate to public values in a community. Technology can play a catalysing and mediating role here, e.g., with new means for community-building and for collaboration of citizens and governments in mutual participation. Important aspects are equality, inclusivity, deliberation, dialogue, and democracy, but also creativity, openness, and transparency.
The research challenge for this group is, departing from a knowledge base in technology and application domains, to generate knowledge on designing interactive applications and user experiences that aim for an optimally constructive effect in society and for individual citizens. Our method is research through design – we create and evaluate innovations by exploring design spaces, studying their effectiveness, and optimising solutions.


About the professor

Dr. ir. Jos van Leeuwen

Jos van Leeuwen graduated on Building Information Technology at Eindhoven University of Technology. After his studies, he worked part-time in the software industry and on his PhD research at Eindhoven University of Technology, where he continued to do research as associate professor and managed the master programme on Design & Decision Support Systems. In 2006 he was invited to a position of associate professor at the Universidade da Madeira, Portugal, where he initiated a new bachelor’s degree on Interactive Media Design and co-founded and co-directed the successful Madeira Interactive Technologies Institute – a collaboration with Carnegie Mellon University. Since 2011, Jos works at The Hague University of Applied Sciences, at the Faculty of IT & Design, initially as associate professor in the Communication & Multimedia Design programme. Since May 2019, he is full professor of Civic Technology.

The intersection between the physical city, human relations, and online activities is an exciting locus to rediscover the city as a place for creating meaningful relations.