enCity learns about investigating data analytics for better design outcomes

enCity learns about investigating data analytics for better design outcomes

enCity had a fruitful discussion with Professor Tuan Phan (PhD Harvard, BSc MIT), a data scientist, on the topic of Telco (telecommunication data) and how to use telco data for planning and designing better cities.
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We had a fascinating sharing session with Dr. Tuan Quang Phan, Associate Professor at University of Hong Kong (HKU) and Associate Director of Asia Care Research Centre who helped us understand the progress in data analytics of location and mobility – two primary characteristics of urban developments.

An R&D dream team: Dr. Tuan (center) with enCity’s Principal of Digital Technologies – Mr Phung (left) and Dr. Phi Ho, Managing Director (right)

Our work in designing for people makes it integral for us to understand people’s habits and behaviors. And while we’re aware that data is out there, understanding how it complements our studies and its potential to make designs better opens a door to possibility. The most recent global phenomena of contact-tracing to curb the spread of the Corona-19 virus, especially in dense living conditions of cities, is an example that needs no elaboration.

While governments largely implemented tracing apps in mobile devices, data is stored through many platforms; social networks (youtube, linkedin); over-the-top apps (whatsapp, telegram); telecommunications providers (mobifone, singtel, indosat) are just some examples.

Whether we’re aware of it or not, we produce data every day. Everything from our food and television preferences, search history, and commute patterns is logged, an easy reference for anyone who needs to understand human behaviour.

Personalized advertisements on your Instagram feed, for example, are curated, after d user data is analyzed. The analysis of mobility patterns, whether within neighborhoods while using public transport, or within retails malls on our spending habits, helps us understand the needs of humans.

Dr. Tuan and Dr. Phi connect over data, in person

We watch kids engage with iPads and mobile phones, asking ‘siri’ to learn more about bugs and birds in their neighborhood; and the data collected can help us in knowing what organisms thrive in those neighborhoods. We can then design the neighborhoods to make them not only more interesting, but also more functional for residents in the long term. It helps us understand our interaction with the natural environment so we can propose strategies to build resilience over time.

The study of human behavior over time, or across different populations, also helps us understand how our society is transforming and how people’s needs shift – so we are better prepared and can design for it. In fact, we might just one day strategically position a dance studio in Dr. Tuan’s neighborhood, since we now know he’s a skilled ballroom dancer.

 

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The study of human behavior over time, or across different populations, also helps us understand how our society is transforming and how people’s needs shift – so we are better prepared and can design for it

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