The Interdisciplinary Laboratory invited to the KOSMOS Summer University »Modern Walking – Innovative Urban Mobility« which took place from 15 to 21,September 2013. Together with experts from Sao Paulo (Universidade de Sao Paulo) and Bogotá (Universidad Nacional de Colombia), researchers gathered to develop and discuss new forms of mobility in urban space within the concept of walking as an efficient, energy saving and sustainable model of transport.
The purpose of this Summer University was to develop interdisciplinary problem-solving strategies for current and future mobility problems. Professors and post-graduate students from humanities and natural science will worked on four key topics together with designers and transport experts.
Walking & Orientation How do we orientate ourselves in the city? Which signs could serve for people and automobiles simultaneously? Interpretation also depends on the cultural background and especially in Latin America, where analphabetism is still an issue, semiotic and oral orientation systems have a distinctively high relevance.
Walking & Acoustics Urban life and movements are influenced by parameters like rhythm, pace and pulse, which can actually be recorded. Under this hybrid understanding of the city it is possible to design patterns of movement as acoustic processes.
Walking & Wisdom of Crowds How do crowds behave? Do individuals move differently when being in a crowd, including different directions and velocities? How do they avoid collision? Heterogenous masses densify, slow down, jam and dissolve again into single elements at metro stations, crossings and narrow passes, getting into buses or trains. How do pedestrians interact with other mobile but non-human actors? What kind of collisions are welcome, and which ones are to be avoided in a crowd?
Walking & Interaction Walking is a very complex operation in which pedestrians nowadays combine the observation of the immediate environment with the use of mobile technology, like smartphones, to interact and determine movement. How do these diverse activities are further stimulated through walking? How much interaction can be brought in without becoming dangerous? Talking on the phone, writing e-mails or sms, talking within a group, how to avoid collision?
A short film gives an insight to the collaboration with experts from Sao Paulo (Universidade de Sao Paulo) and Bogotá (Universidad Nacional de Colombia) during the KOSMOS Summer University and documents the intercultural and interdisciplinary exchange.