12-10-2017 - Peter-Paul Verbeek: Smart Cities and Citizens, a Question of Technology?


Peter-Paul Verbeek
12 Oct 2017

Bozar, Ravensteinstraat 23, 1000 Brussel

Redelijk Eigenzinnig / Reason and Engage is organized by the Vrije Universiteit Brussel (VUB). It is an interdisciplinary course for students and a series of lectures and activities open to all. The third edition of Redelijk Eigenzinnig / Reason and Engage explores scopes and impact of new technologies.


On Thursday 12th of October 2017 (6PM-8PM) Peter-Paul Verbeek will open the 2017/2018-edition with his inaugural lecture: 'Smart cities and citizens, a question of technology?'

In this lecture Prof. Verbeek will address the challenges of smart cities and the role of Internet of Things technologies in public space. He will offer a broad philosophical perspective on human-technology relationships, to provide a context for analyzing the specific and new roles of smart city technologies. On this basis, he will connect current discussions in philosophy of technology with practices of urban planning, design and policymaking. Building on the theory of technological mediation, Prof. Verbeek will investigate how technologies can contribute to the quality of life of (urban) citizens, create new political configurations, and require new forms of citizenship. He will argue that we need to broaden the perspectives from which we look at the influence of the digital domain on the analogue city and bring ethical considerations to the center of the smart city and citizens debate

The lecture will be in English. Entrance is free. To register, click here

Co-production: Bozar Agora & Brussels Academy

Bios / Slides

Peter-Paul Verbeek (1970) is professor of Philosophy of Technology and co-director of the DesignLab of the University of Twente, The Netherlands. He is also honorary professor of techno-anthropology at Aalborg University, Denmark. His research focuses on the philosophy of human-technology relations, and aims to contribute to philosophical theory, ethical reflection, and practices of design and innovation. His publications include Moralizing Technology: Understanding and Designing the Morality of Things (University of Chicago Press, 2011) and What Things Do: Philosophical Reflections on Technology, Agency, and Design (Penn State University Press, 2005). Verbeek is a member of UNESCO – COMEST (World Commission on the Ethics of Science and Technology); the Dutch Concil for the Humanities; the Supervisory Board of TNO (Dutch Organization for applied scientific research); the board of the Rathenau Institute; the program council for Responsible Innovation of NWO – Netherlands Organization for Scientific Research; and the Center for Ethics and Health (Ministry of Health).