RSA Edinburgh: Beyond Technology - Shaping New Places through the Human-Centred Smart City - RSA

RSA Edinburgh Area: Shaping New Places through the Human-Centred Smart City

Fellowship events


Edinburgh Centre for Carbon Innovation, Edinburgh

  • Sustainability
  • Institutional reform
  • Fellowship
  • Fellowship in Action
  • Technology

How can the ‘Smart City’ be imagined as a place for people, where technology is servant, not master? How is the ‘Smart City’ understood by different cities internationally? How are wellbeing and human flourishing, climate change, inclusive growth, and other pressing agendas addressed through this concept? If not ‘smart’ then what would a city be?

These are the questions we will attempt to address at the RSA Edinburgh Area Network re-launch in February. This and other questions continue to challenge politicians, policy-makers, business and academia alike. There is much literature but as yet no coherent theory on the Smart City.  It has equally been characterized as an ICT-driven development owned by powerful corporations. Or in contrast, as indicated by the New Urban Agenda, seen as a visionary ideal that embraces sustainable and inclusive prosperity where technology helps enable a socially progressive society.

Join us to hear Dr. Luca Mora talk about his recent co-authored research on these important futures themes and debate the issues. Dr. Mora is the co-author of a 2018 published paper in the journal Technological Forecasting and Social Change: Strategic Principles for Smart City Development - A Multiple Case Study Analysis of European Best Practices. The themes that will be covered include: the development paths of Smart Cities; strategic principles for building Smart Cities; and an analysis of European best practices.

This event is free to attend, but please book your place by following the link above. You do not have to be a Fellow of the RSA, or a member of the Edinburgh Area Network to attend this event. 

The event will open with a networking reception at 17.30, the launch at 18.00, and the presentation and Q&A commencing at 18.15. The support of the Edinburgh Centre for Carbon Innovation is greatly appreciated.  


About the Speaker:

Dr Luca Mora
BSc, MSc, PgCert, Double PhD, FHEA, FRSA

  • Lecturer in Urban Innovation Dynamics
    EDINBURGH NAPIER UNIVERSITY, The Business School, Edinburgh
  • Research Affiliate
    EDINBURGH NAPIER UNIVERSITY, School of Engineering and the Built Environment Centre for Smart Cities, Edinburgh
  • Visiting Professor
    PÔLE UNIVERSITAIRE LÉONARD DE VINCI, Ecole de Management Léonard De Vinci, Paris

Over the course of his professional career, Luca has committed himself to improving the quality of knowledge production and dissemination processes related to urban and regional innovation management in the digital era. His research is interdisciplinary in nature and lies in the convergence space between urban studies, innovation studies and computer science. Luca’s main research interests include: urban and regional innovation dynamics; urban sustainability; smart city development projects and strategies; Research and Innovation Strategies for Smart Specialisation (RIS3); and strategic planning for smart cities and RIS3. An in-depth account of Dr. Mora’s latest research activity can be found in the following academic articles: (1) How to Overcome the Dichotomous Nature of Smart City Research: Proposed Methodology and Results of a Pilot Study; (2) Combining Co-Citation Clustering and Text-Based Analysis to Reveal the Main Development Paths of Smart Cities; and (3) Strategic Principles for Smart City Development: A Multiple Case Study Analysis of European Best Practices.

We are delighted to have Ed Craig, Executive Director of ECCI to chair the event.

We are also delighted to welcome to the panel Petra Biberbach, Chief Executive of PAS and Irene Beautyman, Planning for Place Programme Manager, Improvement Service.


Contact: Lesley Martin FRSA (RSA Scotland Fellowship Councillor) - 07969 178483

If you have any access requirements or require any reasonable adjustments, please let the team know: [email protected]. Please also let us know if you have any dietary requirements or severe allergies.


Location: Edinburgh Centre for Carbon Innovation, Old High School, 12 Infirmary Street, Edinburgh, EH1 1LZ

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