Deep City: Cli­mate Cri­sis, De­mo­cracy and the Di­gi­tal

Big data, smart systems, machine learningit is inevitable that these new technologies will change the way we study, build and manage our cities. At the same time resurgent interest in consensus and contributive action seems to oppose an exclusively data-driven urbanism. Is the opposition of machine intelligence and democracy inevitable, or are shared trajectories possible? "Deep City: Climate Crisis, Democracy and the Digital" will take place on the EPFL Campus in Lausanne, from March 24th to 27th 2021. Registration is now open

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Politicians, social scientists, urbanists, and architects find their working methods and disciplinary knowledge challenged by insights derived from big data, machine learning and Artificial Intelligence (A.I.). As both citizens and experts in the many respective fields, our mission must be to bring in our disciplinary knowledge and civic engagement to support the appropriate development and discussion of data-driven tools, to consider both their biases and potentials, and to promote broader social literacy and criticality. Ultimately, it is a question of both decanting the technical quality of these new instruments of design, management and decision making, as well as enhancing democratic control over them. How do we do this?  Do our disciplines currently lack adequate strategies to understand, let alone critique or exploit the knowledge-products of machine learning, artificial intelligence and big data?

  DEEP CITY will take place on the EPFL Campus in Lausanne, from March 24th to 27th 2021, with parallel and common activities in partner sites Singapore (in collaboration with SUTD Singapore University of Technology and Design) and Hong Kong (in collaboration with Hong Kong University). This social and cultural event will connect different cities and time zones, augmenting the physical experience through the digital and augmenting the digital through a unique approach to the physical. Within this framework, we will host keynotes and paper presentations, as well as a range of crossing formats such as workshops, political debates, table dinners, exhibitions and guided tours to collectively grasp the DEEP CITY.

DEEP CITY Symposium Latsis EPFL 2020–21 is organized by two EPFL labs, ALICE (Atelier de la Conception de l’espace) and the Media and Design Laboratory (LDM). This joint adventure allows us to bring together ALICE’s concern for situated practices dealing with the emerging and supportive qualities of space as well as with the collective and political dimension of architecture and the city, with LDM’s attention to the links between physical and virtual environments and the effects of digitalization on architecture and contemporary cities, all while making the most of their experience in transdisciplinary cultural and scientific projects.



On-site full participant (sessions + workshops + dinners + publication): 450 CHF


Online full participant (sessions + workshops + publication): 350 CHF


On-site one-day pass (sessions + workshops + dinners + publication): 225 CHF


Online general audience: 12 CHF


More infos here :


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