Group 2 – Social Innovation, Civic Participation and Local Government Participation

Group under the guidance of Impact Hub/Root Impact, City of Zurich/City of Seoul


Kim, Ji Hyun – Seoul Metropolitan Government
Maurer, Simon – City of Zurich
Shin, Hkelly – Root Impact
Vogt, Viktor – Impact Hub Zurich
Scheurer, Johanna – Impact Hub Zurich


The opportunities and challenges of the digital transformation are extraordinary for the concepts of citizens’ participation and social innovation.

Smart city strategies typically uphold and include participation as a democratic value. In practice however, citizens may feel left behind or not heard, important actors may be excluded, and the digital tools imagined to bridge different gaps work less well than expected or omit certain groups.

It is of vital importance however, that solutions for a smart city are developed with the widest participation of stakeholders to be sustainable and inclusive.

In order to navigate successfully through the digital transformation, it’s not only cities who have to collaborate and create solutions – an entire ecosystem including players from the civic, cultural, economic, political etc. sectors have to bring in their experiences, needs, and offerings, in order to co-create a truly inclusive and sustainable smart city.

Where can this exchange of ideas and experiences take place? Besides digital platforms, a broad variety of physical public or private spaces exist where ecosystem players can meet and share their wishes and skills: Community centers, culture venues, universities, innovation hubs – to mention only a few.

Nevertheless, not all ecosystem players will use the same collaboration environments. Therefore, this workshop’s main question is: What are ideal spaces or platforms for fostering participation and collaboration between a city, its citizens, NGOs/NPOs and companies?

In this workshop, experts from a variety of disciplines will come together to compare approaches and tools from both Zurich and Seoul, and work in small groups on finding solutions for specific challenges concerning collaboration between two players (e.g. city-citizens, city-startups, companies-startups etc.). As an innovation hub and with its experience in enabling collaboration between different players, Impact Hub Zürich will facilitate this workshop.

Attendee Target Group: Academics, business leaders, think tanks, policy makers, city officials, practitioners, start-ups, students, and the interested general public.