Talk at the Annual meeting of Finnish geographers

On 25-26 October 2018 I will present the results of my research I am doing for the URMI Project at Tampere University of Technology. Here is more info about the event or read more if you want to see the abstract. 

Good urban life is one of the main targets of urban planners and policy makers today. As key characteristics of liveable, socially balanced and attractive cities, vibrant and attractive places have become valuable social assets. They are no less than a key resource for urban development, directing, and sometimes initiating, both the location and type of new investments.

At the same time, social and economic dynamics of contemporary urban spaces are not exclusively determined by the centrality and visibility of one place, but through other, intangible bonds that challenges the power of physical space. In fact, social media and users-tailored advertising platforms represent, and even have generated themselves new forms of social relations and support economic activities that are not necessarily dependent from spatial design. This has shifted the mantra of location, location, location into communication, communication, communication presenting a new challenge for contemporary architecture to attract users in physical space and guarantee their permanence.

By combining statistical data with publicly shared social media data, at the URMI project we aim to break down the wealth of spatial information at our disposal into the singular choices expressed by dwellers and visitors. We map behavioural patterns to understand what type of environment social media users prefer and how they choose to represent themselves in those spaces. This talk will focus on the case study of Finland, with a European comparison of activity patterns between.