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  3. Urban Mediator Design research project

illustration of Urban Mediator 2nd iteration


Urban Mediator (UM), developed by ARKI research group, is a "hybrid infrastructure for neighbourhoods", researching citizen-driven interactions with government through applications that facilitate the social annotation and sharing of information about places.


ICING - Intelligent Cities for the Next Generation - is a pan-european project researching "a multi-modal, multi-access concept of e-Government". It is funded under the EUs sixth framework programme, with public, academic and private-sector members from Helsinki, Dublin and Barcelona.

From May 2007 to January 2008 I worked as the principal User Interface Designer on Urban Mediator, contributing wireframes, visual design, diagrams, user studies, usability evaluation etc. to various iterations of the project.


Urban Mediator personae

UM research has been conducted through participatory design and an iterative design methodology, where collaborations with local stakeholders and government have led to succesive versions of the Urban Mediator software adapted to different cases.

As such, the name Urban Mediator refers to:

  • The research project.
  • Several different iterations and versions of the urban mediator application, for mobile phones and desktop browsers
  • The "final" (to be released) Urban Mediator open source software, a component of the ICING system.


The Urban Mediator project has been used for trial studies in Dublin, Helsinki and Barcelona. The final version (currently under development) will be released as Open Source software, and form a component of the ICING system.