Becoming a globally leading research hub for sustainable, healthy, responsible and smart cities
Each year more people move to cities to live and work with the figure estimated to reach 70% of the world population in the next 30 years. Along with cities being the primary generators of gross domestic product, they are also the primary sources of pollution presenting an ever-growing threat to sustainable living and quality of life. In responding to this, built environment disciplines such as urban and regional planning, building and construction, architecture and design, and project management play a significant role.
By bringing together researchers from these disciplines, City 4.0* Lab will investigate what is involved in sustainable, healthy, and digital transformation and its implication for our cities, communities, industries, and the environment. It will do this under the interrelated themes of:
- Circularity – Focusing on economic, social, technological, and environmental systems that aim to eliminate waste and maximise the reuse of resources and contribute to sustainable development efforts
- Adaptability – Boosting the ability to make necessary adjustments in ecological, social, technological, and economic systems in response to actual or expected climatic stimuli and their effects or impacts
- Liveability – Enhancing the conditions of a decent life for all inhabitants of cities, regions and communities including their physical and mental wellbeing
- Accessibility – Informing the practice of making information, activities, opportunities, and environments sensible, meaningful, and equitably usable for as many people as possible
- Authenticity – Forming and maintaining spaces, places and communities that are genuine and distinctive and contain recognisable social-cultural and natural characteristics and identity
- Responsibility – Informing governance decisions, including in technology adoption and utilisation, through ethical, accountable, trustworthy, explainable, and equitable frameworks
* We define City 4.0 as a city that utilises technological developments and digitalisation to transform local public services and local economy to produce sustainable and desired urban, environmental and societal outcomes for all.
The purpose of the City 4.0 Lab is to conduct multidisciplinary research to inform industry practice, community programs, and government policies, and goals of productive, sustainable, and healthy urban life.
- Through its multidisciplinary research, the City 4.0 Lab strives for a productive, sustainable, and healthy urban life that requires cooperative and coordinated generation and synthesis of different types of knowledge
- Through its multidisciplinary research teams, the City 4.0 Lab offers innovative solutions required to address complex social, economic, governance and environmental issues of our cities
- Through its multidisciplinary research projects, the City 4.0 Lab brings different perspectives to the issues at hand while also providing insight into how individual disciplines can be strengthened
- Through its inclusiveness principle, the City 4.0 Lab offers multidiscipline membership, and structures, initiatives and practices that foster collaboration and aim for outcomes of mutual benefit to its members and partners
- Through its external partnerships, the City 4.0 Lab recognises the vital role of industry, government, and the community in the application of research to help realise the goals of productive, sustainable, and health urban life
The principal objective of City 4.0 Lab is to produce high-quality impactful research on matters to do with the sustainable, healthy, digital transformation of cities, both in Australia and around the world, with the aim of leveraging the capability of engaged and connected citizens, digital technology, and data.
This objective will be achieved by actioning the following four goals:
- Lead high-quality research and create innovative responses to problems and issues related to urban environments
- Promote interdisciplinary and inter-institutional research collaboration that will lead to improvement in the quality of life of urban citizens
- Actively engage in knowledge transfer activities by collaborating with industry, community, and government
- Provide research training and nurture a critical mass of researchers committed to creating sustainable, healthy, smart cities